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UNHCR warns of major humanitarian crisis looming in Afghanistan
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 04 - 09 - 2021

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has warned of a humanitarian catastrophe looming in Afghanistan, amid continuing uncertainty over the situation of vulnerable Afghans seeking shelter across the country's borders.
UNHCR spokesperson Babar Baloch told Friday's press briefing that the displacement crisis is indeed inside Afghanistan, where more than 600,000 Afghans have been displaced this year, "80 percent of whom are women and children."
Baloch stressed in an appeal to the world not to distract its attention or focus from Afghans and Afghanistan, and that the situation in Afghanistan cannot be allowed to become a "humanitarian catastrophe", citing that UNHCR has not witnessed such a large influx of refugees crossing the borders into Pakistan and Iran before.
UNHCR's Refugee Zakat Fund
UNHCR also announced that its Refugee Zakat Fund has expanded its reach to include displaced families in Afghanistan. Donors can now direct their Zakat and Sadaqah donations to support internally displaced families, helping them secure their most urgent needs. These donations can be channelled through the GiveZakat App or the Refugee Zakat Fund website.
The evolving volatile situation in Afghanistan is resulting in a large-scale internal displacement of families seeking safety and security. Since the beginning of 2021 over half a million individuals were reported to have been displaced, a number that continues to rise daily. UNHCR and partners remain operational and committed to delivering critical and urgent assistance to internally displaced families.
Zakat contributions will help UNHCR, and partners, in providing the necessary assistance, such as shelter, food, healthcare, sanitation, and other relief items.
"Thousands of displaced families have been impacted by the recent developments in Afghanistan and rely on humanitarian aid for their survival. This crucial expansion allows donors to fulfill their humanitarian duties by directing their Zakat and Sadaqah donations, to help displaced Afghan families secure their most urgent needs," said Khaled Khalifa, UNHCR senior advisor on Islamic Philanthropy and Representative in the Gulf Cooperation Council Area.
UNHCR's Refugee Zakat Fund is fully Shariah-compliant and is backed by ten fatwas from leading scholars and institutions, such as Al Azhar Islamic Research Academy, the Muslim World League, and the International Islamic Fiqh Academy. The Fund is subject to strict governance, ensuring the utmost transparency at every step, from donation to provision of assistance, without any deduction. — Agencies

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