The Taliban took over Afghanistan on August 15, but its stunning military sweep of the capital Kabul came after months of deadly fighting across the country, leaving hundreds dead and more than half a million people internally displaced since the start of the year.
In July alone, the number of internally displaced people (IDPs) in Afghanistan nearly doubled compared with the month before as 206,967 more people were displaced, according to the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.
The number of displaced people is now more than 570,000 – nearly 80 percent of whom are women and children.
Tens of thousands of Afghans have fled the country, fearing more violence, with at least 113,500 people evacuated by the US and its western allies from Kabul airport in the past two weeks.
More Afghans are expected to flee in the future, with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimating that 500,000 people will leave the country in the next four months due to political uncertainty.
570,482 internally displaced people
More than half the IDPs come from just five of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces: Kunduz (98,737), Bamyan (90,790), Badghis (53,028), Nangarhar (38,175) and Takhar (33,376).
14 million people going hungry
One-third of Afghanistan’s population of 38 million is facing food insecurity, including two million children who are already malnourished, according to the World Food Programme (WFP).null
Afghanistan has faced severe food shortages even before the Taliban takeover two weeks ago. Some 40 percent of crops have been lost and livestock devastated by droughts.
WFP Executive Director David Beasley said that the food-assistance branch of the UN would start to run out of food in September without additional funding.
According to the Integrated Phase Classification (IPC) acute food insecurity analysis report (PDF), which examines food insecurity, at least four provinces – Daykundi, Faryab, Ghor and Badakshan are facing emergency levels of food shortages.
Most Afghans live in poverty
Afghanistan has been ravaged by four decades of war. Before the coronavirus pandemic, at least 54.5 percent of the country lived below the poverty line with current estimates reaching up to 72 percent.
It is one of the poorest countries in the world. Last year, President Ashraf Ghani said 90 percent of the population was living on less than $2 a day.