New York: Countries must unite and act urgently to secure a better future for Afghan people as the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan continues to deteriorate, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Wednesday, ANI reported. Guterres was speaking in a video message at a regional conference of Afghanistan's neighbours organised by Iran.
He said that Afghanistan is facing a humanitarian crisis of epic proportions and is on the verge of a development catastrophe. He urged countries to speak with one voice.
More stability could be achieved only through a united approach, and together, the countries should act with determination, without delay, to help the Afghan people, he said. He outlined four areas for action that are of regional and international concern, starting with humanitarian relief.
UN is undertaking a big humanitarian operation despite many obstacles. It is acting with the cooperation of the Taliban, who gave the organisation access to the areas requested and provided security when needed, Guterres said.
He thanked neighbouring nations for their assistance in moving aid workers and supplies. He reiterated the need for continued collaboration on the issue of refugees and said that international support to hosting countries must match the scale of needs.
He further said that work is needed to be done together to revive Afghan's economy, which is at the edge of collapse. Liquidity can be injected into its economy without violating international laws or compromising principles, he said. He added that Afghan people also need an inclusive and representative government that respects international humanitarian law and upholds human rights and fundamental freedoms.
The meeting, held in Tehran, was attended by foreign ministers of Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan while their Russian and Chinese counterparts joined by video, according to reports.