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At 01.30 local time on 22 June, a 5.9 magnitude earthquake struck the Central Region of Afghanistan impacting Paktika and Khost provinces. Action Against Hunger was not operating in the affected areas but has decided to quickly deploy an emergency response team to evaluate the situation.
Affected districts identified to date include Barmal, Ziruk, Nika and Giyan in Paktika province and Spera district in Khost Province. Giyan district in Paktika province is reportedly the worst affected with up to 200 people killed and 100 people injured, many of them seriously. In addition, up to 1,800 homes have reportedly been destroyed and damaged in Gayan, representing 70 per cent of the district’s housing stock.
« Afghanistan do not have enough infrastructures to cope with such an earthquake. The number of people killed or injured has yet to be confirmed and is expected to rise as search and rescue operations are ongoing » commented Samy Guessabi, Action Against Hunger country director in Afghanistan
Humanitarian actors are preparing to assist affected families in Paktika and Khost provinces in coordination with the authorities. This major earthquake rocked one of the most vulnerable country in the world where more than 24 millions people are already in need of humanitarian assistance.
"Afghanistan do not have enough infrastructures to cope with such an earthquake."
« That’s why we have decided to quickly deploy an emergency response team to conduct a joint assessment with others humanitarian actors in the most affected areas including Barmal, Ziruk, Nika and Giyan in Paktika province and Spera district in Khost Province » explains Samy Guessabi.
The plan is to provide cash assistance to at least 2000 beneficiaries within few days. Action Against Hunger response will be further developed based on the emerging needs.
Action Against Hunger is working in Afghanistan since 1995. The mission employs approximately 900 staff in Kabul and 4 operational bases: Helmand, Ghor, Daykundi, and Badakhshan. Action Against Hunger teams address the underlying conditions that give rise to deadly malnutrition and food insecurity and provide access to basic health services.