The Trauma of Temblor: Afghanistan

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Deep, deep, deep inside earth, the Indian plate collided with the Eurasian plate and a 6.1 magnitude temblor shook and shocked Afghanistan on June 22.

The quake took at least 1,000 lives, leaving several others displaced. Over 10,000 houses were completely or partially damaged. The search for the dear ones from the debris fetched miserable results.

In addition to Gayan, Barmala, Naka and Ziruk four districts of Paktika province, Spera district in Khost province was severely affected in the quake. A follow up tremor hit the area hard again on Friday, killing five more people.

The disaster has mounted several challenges for the Taliban, who are already tormented by decades-long war, poverty, pandemic, hunger and economic crisis across the nation of 40 million. The disaster has placed Afghanistan once again in global attention for the wrong reason.

Following the quake, over 42 planes and a group of 15 trucks reached the quake-hit areas with housing and food items including rice, oil and flour. The Afghan government announced 100 million afghani, or $1.1 million. The locals started volunteering to collect money to support the affected families.

Despite their chilling political and diplomatic ties, Afghanistan drew immediate response from the countries in the neighbourhood and the west.

The Taliban urged the US to unfreeze the foreign funds of Afghanistan and lift the stringent sanctions imposed on them following the deadly earthquake in the country. Qatar, Iran, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, South Korea, Taiwan and Pakistan have extended support to Afghanistan. China announced humanitarian aid worth $7.5 million for the quake-hit nation. The UK announced £2.5 million in aid for Afghanistan.

The local staff of the International Federation of the Red Cross facilitated the shelter, medication, water, sanitation, and other basic requirements of the people in Khost and Paktika. The Norwegian Refugee Council served the affected people and provided cash assistance to the affected families.

India responded immediately to stand by the ravaged state. India’s response was prompt and timely. A technical team was sent by India to coordinate the distribution of humanitarian aid across Afghanistan.

India has sent 27 tons of emergency relief materials including blankets,bags, sleeping mats, tents and sleeping bags. Despite India pulled back her diplomatic missions from Afghanistan, India’s commitment to the people of Afghanistan can be found in her actions.

“India sent next shipment of 3000 MTs of wheat today to Afghanistan. —Khaama News Press Agency

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