In another context, the Taliban announced last month that more than 160 people have died from the cold in Afghanistan this month, in the worst winter in more than a decade, as residents have described their inability to afford the fuel to heat their homes in temperatures below one degree Celsius antifreeze.
“162 people have died from the cold since January 10 so far, including about 84 deaths in the past week,” said Shafiullah Rahimi, the ministry’s spokesman for disaster management, citing Reuters.
The coldest winter in 15 years, which saw temperatures drop to -34 degrees Celsius (-29.2 degrees Fahrenheit), has hit Afghanistan amid a severe economic crisis. Many humanitarian groups have in Part suspended operations in recent weeks due to a Taliban administration that ruled most female NGO workers unable to work, leaving agencies unable to handle many programs in the conservative country.
During a visit to Kabul this week, UN aid chief Martin Griffiths said the international organization is seeking exemptions from the ban for most aid workers, who arrive in one of the most vulnerable moments for many Afghans.
“The Afghan winter … as everyone knows in Afghanistan is the greatest messenger of death for many families in Afghanistan and we are going through these many years of humanitarian need…we are seeing some consequences in loss of life,” Griffiths told Reuters.
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