The top priority right now is the safety of local Afghan staff and their families. We are pulling out all the stops in order to get local staff who have been working for German development cooperation projects or for aid organisations cooperating with us out of Afghanistan.
The security situation in Afghanistan has drastically worsened and is extremely volatile. The safety of all those working for German development cooperation projects in Afghanistan is an absolute priority.
Right now, because of the current situation and how it is developing, all official development cooperation is suspended.
International donors like the EU and the World Bank have likewise stopped any disbursements for development projects. The IMF has done the same.
Other than that, there are NGOs carrying out important humanitarian work in Afghanistan. They are implementing their own projects under their own responsibility, especially humanitarian assistance projects for food security and education. We are engaged in close and intensive talks with the NGOs about how humanitarian support for the people of Afghanistan can be maintained.
Gains achieved as a result of our activities until now
Since the first international deployments to Afghanistan in 2002, German development cooperation activities have been instrumental together with other efforts by the international community in improving living conditions in Afghanistan:
- The number of children in school is twelve times higher than it was and currently stands at more than 12 million. Girls in particular have enjoyed the benefits of this increase.
- Thanks to the development of the electricity supply network, more than one million people have been supplied with energy.
- Per capita income has increased fourfold.
- Life expectancy has risen by nine years since 2002.
- 87 per cent of Afghans have access to health care services (compared with 8 per cent in 2001).
- 70,000 new household connections for drinking water have been installed thanks to German development cooperation.
Support for internally displaced Afghan citizens and Afghan refugees in neighbouring countries
Even before the Taliban takeover, Afghanistan was the country of origin of the third highest number of refugees in the world (after Syria and Venezuela), with more than 2.5 million Afghans so far having had to leave their homeland. Most refugees stay in the local region.
There is urgent need for immediate action to strengthen international support in order to provide assistance for the growing number of internally displaced persons and refugees in the immediate neighbourhood.