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Facing acute humanitarian challenges Afghanistan needs global support UN report

“Given the complex interaction among drought, food insecurity and poppy cultivation, assistance partners must act urgently to strengthen livelihood opportunities in vulnerable areas while supporting the reintegration of returning populations into host communities,” Mr. Annan writes, calling for “the ongoing provision of humanitarian assistance that addresses the immediate needs of vulnerable communities while also facilitating their recovery over the longer term.”Afghanistan’s precarious situation requires special attention as temperatures drop, the report points out. “Millions of people face considerable hardship over this winter, and urgently require assistance.”In addition, “the Government itself needs financing to meet its own core costs, and to support the needs of its own people,” the Secretary-General cautions. He notes that a projected budget deficit will lead to cuts in government services.The Afghan Government, which has “clearly signalled its intention to take the lead in the reconstruction,” cannot accomplish this task alone, Mr. Annan says, appealing to the donor community “to reaffirm its commitment to support Afghanistan through the full range of needs extending from humanitarian assistance to development aid.” read more