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Afghanistan: UN launches nine-month operation to assist returnees with emergency food and cash

Afghanistan: UN launches nine-month operation to assist returnees with emergency food and cash

India Blooms News Service | | 16 Nov 2016, 04:01 am
New York, Nov 16 (Just Earth News): The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has launched a nine-month operation to assist Afghanistan in dealing with the growing numbers of returnees from Pakistan, as well as and internally displaced people, by providing emergency food and funds.

Thousands of refugees are now crossing the border every day at the main entry point of Torkham, in eastern Afghanistan, some with identity papers and some without. According to WFP, more than one million people are expected to be on the mover across the country by the end of the year.

In cooperation with Afghanistan’s Ministry of Refugees and Repatriation, WFP intends to set up a digital registration platform at the border to capture the returnees’ biometric data using SCOPE, the agency’s beneficiary management application.

In addition, WFP is monitoring the situation using mVAM tool, a vulnerability assessment mapping, to allow the community leaders to report any shifts in the emergency situation over their mobile phones, and to ensure that no one is left behind. But a successful response depends on adequate financing.

“We need sufficient and timely funds, in the coming weeks and months to ensure that we can help returnees as rapidly and efficiently as possible,” stated Mick Lorentzen, WFP’s Country Director in Afghanistan, ensuring that a quick and focused response to the crisis will prevent more people from falling into chronic food insecurity.

WFP and other United Nations agencies are working closely with the Afghan government to increase the capacity of humanitarian response and meet immediate shelter, sanitation and food needs, which also required an urgent appeal for $162 million.

The agency is providing food and cash assistance for 163,000 undocumented returnees, 200,000 documented returnees, 160,000 internally displaced people, and 35,000 refugees in Khost and Paktika. WFP has also increased its assistance in eastern Afghanistan, and is now providing support to prevent malnutrition to more than 23,000 toddlers from returnee families. The goal is to support 550,000 people through emergency operation.

WFP has received very generous and timely contributions from Australia, Belgium, Italy and Norway. Operational costs are estimated to be $66.8 million, only 12 per cent of which has thus far been met.

For the latest situation report on the emergency, visit ReliefWeb

Photo: WFP/Wahidullah Amani


Source: www.justearthnews.com

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again; UNESCO regrets #HagiaSophia, #Turkey, #Istanbul, #HagiaSophiaMosqueAgain Istanbul/IBNS: Hagia Sophia, Turkey's iconic monument, a UNESCO World Heritage and one of the central attractions of its capital Istanbul, is no longer a museum. It has been turned back as a mosque though some 1500 years ago it was built as an Orthodox Christian cathedral. Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque during the Ottoman time in 1453 while under Ataturk it was turned into a museum in 1935. The decision comes amid a growing rise of the Islamists in Turkey who had been demanding that it be restored as a mosque though Opposition leaders with secular credentials had been against the move. A top court in Turkey ruled that turning it into a museum in 1935 by modern Turkey's secular architect Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was illegal, paving the way for present Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to declare it as a mosque again and to open it for Muslim prayers. Erdogan made the announcement an hour after the court ruled the conversion to museum in 1935 as illegal and scrapped its status. "May it be beneficial," posted Erdogan on Twitter, sharing an official document on the change with his signature. UNESCO regrets In an immediate reaction, UNESCO said it "deeply regrets" the decision. UNESCO said it was "regrettable that the Turkish decision was not the subject of dialog nor notification beforehand". "UNESCO calls on the Turkish authorities to open a dialog without delay in order to avoid a step back from the universal value of this exceptional heritage whose preservation will be reviewed by the World Heritage Committee in its next session," the United Nation's cultural body said in a statement. Istanbul icon of beauty and wonderment According to Turkey's official tourism website, Hagia Sophia is a remarkable achievement in the history of architecture. and a living proof of mankind's revolt against the laws of physics and it calls it a monument whose importance transcends borders. It is one of UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage sites attracting millions of visitors across the world with its majestic grandeur

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again 11 Jul 2020, 01:37 pm