The head of U.N. aid Martin Griffiths will go to Afghanistan in the coming weeks to speak with the highest-ranking members of the Taliban government after it barred female aid workers from working there.
According to the UN, several time-critical programs had been temporarily halted, and other activities will probably be put on hold.
U.N. aid coordinator in Afghanistan Ramiz Alakbarov said, “We regret to see that there is already an impact of this decision on our programs.”
He said that approximately 30% of assistance workers were women and that they wouldn’t be replaced by men.
Alakbarov also said, “Humanitarian needs of the people are enormous and it’s important that we continue to stay and deliver.”
According to the UN, 20 million people in Afghanistan are suffering from severe hunger, 97% of the population relies on charity for survival, and two-thirds of Afghans live in poverty.
According to Alakbarov, a discussion with the health minister regarding the provision of services for women and girls by female assistance workers was quite productive. He said that U.N. officials were meeting with ministries to address the impact on aid programs.