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UN agency warns over growing Afghans' food insecurity
December 22,2020   By:Xinhua
KABUL, Dec.22,2020 -- About 16 million Afghans, including 5.5 million who were lacking food insecurity, have been in urgent need of aids in Afghanistan, a UN aid agency warned Monday.
 
The Kabul-based Office for Coordination of the Humanitarian Aids (OCHA) said in a statement that 16 million Afghans will be in need of humanitarian aids in 2021.
 
The agency said over the past five years, the food security situation in the war-torn country, has steadily deteriorated and the percentage of insecure people doubled from 37 in 2015 to 76 in 2020.
 
"The number of people in crisis or emergency levels of food insecurity has risen from 13.9 million in November 2019 to 16.9 million, or 42 percent of the population in November 2020," the statement read.
 
According to OCHA, the economic and social conditions created by the COVID-19 pandemic have also exacerbated protection risks for vulnerable families.
 
Many Afghans, according to the source, had already depleted limited financial, mental, and social coping capacities due to prolonged conflict or recurrent natural disasters.
 
Financial strains and fear of catching COVID-19 meant that facility-based primary health and trauma services were underutilized in 2020, resulting in deteriorating health needs in 2021, the statement noted.
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