IMF funds for Afghanistan on hold over political uncertainty

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IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said on Thursday at a press conference that Afghanistan will not have access to this grant because of the uncertainty over Afghanistan’s government….reports Asian Lite News

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has put on hold funds to Afghanistan amid the rising uncertainty in the country.

These developments came after IMF recently announced a USD 650 billion Special Drawing Rights (SDR) allocation for member countries, but Afghanistan at the moment will not be allowed to access these funds, Tolo News reported.

IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said on Thursday at a press conference that Afghanistan will not have access to this grant because of the uncertainty over Afghanistan’s government.

“Our engagement with Afghanistan has been suspended until there is clarity within the international community on the recognition of the government. We’re guided by the international community in terms of the recognition of the government in Afghanistan, and we don’t have that,” he added.

So, the IMF program there has been put on hold. And again, as we said last month, the country cannot access IMF resources, SDRs and so on at this point. But again, I want to say that we stand ready to work with the international community to advocate urgent actions to stall a looming humanitarian crisis, Rice said.

Rice also said that IMF is deeply concerned about the difficult economic and humanitarian situation in Afghanistan.

Soon after the Taliban’s take over of Kabul on August 15, foreign assistance was immediately frozen. Besides this, the US stopped USD 9.4 billion in reserves to the country’s central bank, The New York Post reported.

Moreover, the International Monetary Fund and World Bank have also stopped loans, and the Financial Action Task Force warned its 39 member nations to block Taliban assets.

Many Afghans are trying to get money not just for survival but in order to escape the Taliban controlled country. They fear that history may repeat itself.

635,000 displaced

UN humanitarians said that 635,000 people in Afghanistan were routed from their homes this year because of violence, with more than 12,000 recently displaced to Kabul, mainly from Panjshir Province.

The world organization and its partners have reached 8 million people in the first half of 2021, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a release.

Some 1,300 displaced people in Kabul are about to receive aid.

The office said the UN Refugee Agency and the International Organization for Migration handed out relief to more than 9,300 people displaced by the violence in Kunar Province.

The World Food Programme will distribute food rations for the lean months of October to January of next year, OCHA said, reaching hundreds of thousands of vulnerable people. Some 63,000 people in Maidan Wardak province are to receive food aid.

Healthcare is also a priority in the humanitarian response.

A measles outbreak in the Yawan and Raghistan districts of Badakhshan province impacted at least 29 children, the office said.

The World Health Organisation aided Nimroz provincial hospital to install a new Polymerase chain reaction machine with a capacity of 70 to 90 tests per day, OCHA said. It allows for significantly increased coronavirus testing. (ANI)

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