October 21, 2019

Natural Disasters and Our Shared Responsibilities

Natural Disasters and Our Shared Responsibilities

Our country like the wider region has experienced heavy rainfall during the winter and spring months of the current year. If winter saw heavy snowfall, the spring season was accompanied with rainfall which still continues with frequency today.

If snowfall and rain eliminated all signs of drought of the last few years and bore glad tidings of prosperous years ahead, it also took away the lives of many and caused material losses in many parts of the country.

Herat, Saripul, Badghis, Faryab, Kandahar and multiple other provinces experienced a torrent of floods due to heavy rainfall over the past month, destroying entire villages, homes, shops, animals and agriculture land and leaving hundreds of fatalities in its wake.

Even as thousands of families in the flood affected areas await humanitarian assistance including food, shelter and medical aid, the national relief programs and international community has yet to take any effective steps to raise awareness or give any meaningful assistance to the victims over the past several weeks.

Whenever any other part of the world is hit by natural disasters, all the international aid agencies, humanitarian institutions and other NGOs begin raising awareness through the media, launch aid campaigns and fund collection programs which are then responded to by individuals, societies and governments to their own capabilities so that the victims of disasters can begin receiving humanitarian relief.

But it is very unfortunate that our oppressed and poor nation is also dealt with unjustly in this regard. Even as a month has passed since disasters first struck people in many parts of the country and this natural series continues till today, we have yet to see any effective steps taken on a national or international level for the relief of victims.

The list of aid agencies and humanitarian NGOs inside our country surpasses one thousand with each organization claiming humanitarian status yet all suddenly disappear when disaster strikes. It seems that these organizations only categorize humanitarian aid as having posh offices, driving luxury cars, receiving high end salaries and publishing annual statistics on piece of paper. It is even more unfortunate that these so-called aid agencies in our country with no track record of relief activities only serve as tools to embezzle funds and deprive of tragedy struck nation of any meaningful aid.

Just as the Islamic Emirate deems it its responsibility to provide assistance to the victims of floods and other natural disasters, it has also ordered its Mujahideen to provide humanitarian relief in areas under their control. It similarly calls on the entire nation and the international community to provide emergency aid to the flood victims, to not hold back from providing them with shelter, food, water and other necessities. Aid agencies and humanitarian organizations must also wake up from their slumber and use their capabilities to turn this natural disaster into an international issue and make appropriate use the gathered resources.

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