Nov 23, 2021 08:02 UTC
  • Red Cross warns economic sanctions causing massive suffering in Afghanistan

A top Red Cross official has warned that economic sanctions against Afghanistan are depriving millions across the crisis-wracked country of the basics they need to survive, voicing fury over the massive man-made suffering.

The economic sanctions “meant to punish those in power in Kabul are instead freezing millions of people across Afghanistan out of the basics they need to survive,” Dominik Stillhart, operations director at the International Committee of the Red Cross, said in a statement on Monday.

“I am livid,” Stillhart said at the end of a six-day visit to Afghanistan, describing the situation in the war-torn as “absolutely infuriating.”

“It’s so infuriating because this suffering is man-made,” he added, according to AFP.

Afghanistan is facing what UN agencies have described as “one of the world’s worst humanitarian disasters” since the collapse of Kabul in mid-August, which came after the United States’ disastrous withdrawal from the country.

The US military withdrew its forces from Afghanistan 20 years after they invaded the country to topple the Taliban, in a war that killed, according to one estimate, between 897,000 and 929,000 people.

Since the Taliban regained power in Afghanistan, the US and its allies have imposed sanctions on the Central Asian country and deprived Afghans of any aid and assistance on the pretext of pressuring the Taliban.

However, human rights activists maintain that economic sanctions generally do not punish the rulers, but rather, hurt the population, lead to mass starvation, and fuel extremism in the targeted country.