US ‘warmly welcomes’ OIC’s role, contributions for Afghanistan amid fears of chaos

02:48 PM | 20 Dec, 2021
US ‘warmly welcomes’ OIC’s role, contributions for Afghanistan amid fears of chaos

ISLAMABAD – The United States has welcomed the role and contributions of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) which set up a Humanitarian Trust Fund and Food Security Programme for dealing with the rapidly aggravating crisis in the war-torn nation.

US special representative for Afghanistan shared a tweet after the conclusion of the 17th Extraordinary Session of the OIC’s Council of Foreign Ministers, called by Saudi Arabia, and hosted at the Parliament House in Pakistan’s federal capital.

West, in the recent tweet, said a productive OIC session was held today with important outcomes — not least the creation of a humanitarian trust fund and the naming of an OIC Special Envoy.

The comments of the US representative came after the conclusion of the Extraordinary Session of the OIC’s Council of Foreign Ministers.

OIC on Sunday adopted Joint Resolution brings a glimmer of hope for the 22.8 million people – more than half the population of Afghanistan – who face acute food shortage. Around 3.2 million children and 700,000 pregnant and lactating women are at the risk of acute malnutrition.

The document adopted after day-long deliberations at Parliament House building also expressed solidarity with the Afghans and reiterated the commitment of the OIC Member States to help bring peace, security, stability and development to Afghanistan.

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The extraordinary meeting was convened as the UN’s estimates warned that 60% of Afghanistan’s 38 million people face “crisis levels of hunger” and that the situation was getting worse every day. The OIC also expressed deep alarm at the deteriorating humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan.

Prime Minister Imran Khan also addressed the conference and warned, “Unless action is taken immediately, Afghanistan is heading for chaos.” He said “chaos suits no one” and urged the world to understand the gravity of the situation and reach out to the Afghan people who were facing starvation.

The Council of Foreign Ministers also took into account the fact that the United Nations High Commission for Refugees has pointed out that 665,000 people were displaced within Afghanistan between January and September 2021 – in addition to the 2.9 million people already internally displaced by the conflict in Afghanistan.

Expressing deep concern over the breakdown of Afghanistan’s health system, disease outbreaks and severe malnutrition, in particular in the face of Covid-19 pandemic, the OIC decided to establish a Humanitarian Trust Fund, under the aegis of the Islamic Development Bank, which would serve as a vehicle to channel humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan, in partnership with other international actors.

The Council of Foreign Ministers decided that the OIC General Secretariat, together with the Islamic Development Bank and Humanitarian Trust Fund, shall commence discussions with the UN system organisations to devise a roadmap for mobilizing action in relevant fora to unlock the financial and banking channels to resume liquidity and flow of financial and humanitarian assistance. It would also devise a mechanism for disbursement of urgent and sustained humanitarian assistance to people of Afghanistan.

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