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Pakistan Vows Not to Abandon Afghans in Time of Need

by Newsweek Pakistan

File photo of an earlier meeting of the Apex Committee. Photo courtesy PID

Apex committee meeting welcomes U.N. appeal for aid to Afghanistan to avert humanitarian crisis

Pakistan on Friday stressed that it will not abandon Afghans in their time of need, as it renewed a global appeal for aid to Afghanistan amidst a deteriorating humanitarian situation.

“Pakistan is committed to providing all-out support to the Afghan people to avert a humanitarian crisis,” Prime Minister Imran Khan said while chairing the third meeting of the Apex Committee on Afghanistan. “We welcome the U.N.’s appeal for aid to Afghanistan,” he added.

According to a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office, the apex committee renewed its appeal to the international community and relief agencies to provide aid to Afghanistan to avert economic collapse and save precious lives. “The prime minister directed the authorities concerned to explore bilateral cooperation with friendly countries as well to stave off a humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan by exporting qualified and trained manpower, especially in medical, I.T., finance and accounting.” It added.

Khan also directed authorities concerned to extend cooperation to Kabul in the fields of railways, minerals, pharmaceuticals and media to help in the rehabilitation and development of the war-torn state.

The committee was briefed on the progress in providing in-kind humanitarian assistance of Rs. 5 billion to Afghanistan, comprising food commodities that include 50,000 metric tons of wheat; emergency medical supplies; winter shelters; and other necessary supplies.

During the meeting, the apex committee was also informed that Afghanistan was on the verge of a crisis provoked by hunger and inclement during the harsh winter, as its economic crunch is making it difficult for people to get enough food and shelter. The committee resolved to stand together with Afghan people and urged relief agencies to take immediate action.

In addition to the prime minister, the meeting was attended by Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Information Minister Chaudhry Fawad Hussain, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid, Adviser to the P.M. on Commerce Abdul Razzak Dawood, National Security Adviser Moeed Yusuf, Chief of Army Staff Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa and other senior civil and military officers.

The Apex Committee on Afghanistan—a high-level body tasked with coordinating a national response to the plight of Afghans—has been meeting since November with an aim toward preventing humanitarian crisis in the war-torn state.

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