The Federal Foreign Office is donating 1 million euro to German aid agencies for urgent projects to deal with the winter emergency in Afghanistan. The country is currently in the grip of the harshest winter for more than a decade. People living in remote villages as well as returnees and internally displaced persons are particularly at risk.
Federal Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier issued in Berlin the following statement on 24 January:
"The harsh winter in Afghanistan is hitting hardest those who are most vulnerable. For many families living in remote areas it was impossible to make adequate preparations for the winter. The aid we are giving is sorely needed and will help them to survive. Particularly the children and the elderly are in dire need of our help."
Heavy snowfalls and extreme cold have left Afghanistan's western and northern provinces as well as the central highlands seriously short of supplies.