Washington [US], June 29 (ANI): The United States would provide nearly USD 55 million in immediate humanitarian assistance to the people impacted by the devastating earthquake in Afghanistan's southeastern part.
The funds will be used to deliver the essential food items, clothing, cooking utensils, blankets, jerry cans, and sanitation supplies to prevent waterborne diseases in the disaster-hit areas, Voice of America reported.
According to the publication, the US has been the largest humanitarian donor to Afghanistan and over USD 774 million in humanitarian assistance over the past year"The United States has an enduring commitment to the people of Afghanistan, and we welcome and encourage support from our international partners in this time of great need," Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement on Tuesday.
The U.S. announcement came only a day after the United Nations appealed for USD 110.3 million in urgent humanitarian response to some 360,000 Afghans impacted by the earthquake, reported Voice of America.
The UN and the Afghan government have been largely involved in the operations to save civilians. However, the United Nations said it does not have heavy machines and equipment and relies on the Afghan authorities to provide it.
The United Nations has allocated USD 10 million from the UN Central Emergency Response Funds (UNCERF) on Sunday to support the people of Afghanistan affected by the earthquake that struck this week in the eastern part of the country.
Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator stated that the UN has released USD 10 million from UNCERF for the affected people of Afghanistan to help with the immediate response.
"Hundreds of people killed. Many more injured. Homes destroyed. Children buried in the rubble. The AfghanistanEarthquake is the latest tragedy to befall the country. I released USD 10 million from @UNCERF to help with the immediate response," Griffiths said in a tweet. On Wednesday, a 5.9-magnitude earthquake jolted parts of Afghanistan including the capital city Kabul. At present, over 1000 people are estimated to have been killed across Barmal and Giyan districts in Paktika province, and Spera district in Khost province.
In addition, at least 1,455 people have been injured across three of the six most affected districts of Barmal, Giyan, and Spera - many of them seriously. Over 10,000 houses have been destroyed. In wake of this, India handed over the second batch of humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan on Friday in the presence of Taliban officials.
The relief assistance handed over by the Ministry of External Affairs Joint Secretary (PAI), JP Singh consisted of essential items including family ridge tents, sleeping bags, blankets, sleeping mats, etc to support the people of Afghanistan in quake-affected regions.
The first consignment from India was handed over on Thursday. India also deployed a team to the Embassy in Kabul to coordinate the efforts of stakeholders for the delivery of humanitarian aid. The Taliban welcomed India's decision to return its technical team to continue humanitarian assistance in Afghanistan.
Earlier, the European Commission also announced 1 million euros in humanitarian funding for an estimated 270,000 people living in the affected areas requiring emergency assistance.
Immediate humanitarian assistance was dispatched to affected areas on June 22, including 10 tons of medical supplies sufficient for 5,400 surgeries and medical treatments covering 36,000 people for three months by WHO. (ANI)