Taliban says ‘thankful’ for assistance after India sends essential medicines

India delivered medicines to Afghanistan, Jan. 6/7, 2022, to Afghanistan, now under Taliban rule. Photo Twitter @MEAIndia

India on Friday, Jan. 7, 2022, sent two tons of essential medicines to Afghanistan as part of its humanitarian assistance to Afghans who are going through a severe humanitarian crisis following the regime change in August last year. Supplies have been delivered to Indira Gandhi Hospital in Kabul.

“India stands committed to continue our special relationship with the people of Afghanistan and provide them humanitarian assistance,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement on Friday. The fresh assistance in addition to the 500,000 Covid-19 vaccines and 1.6 tons of medicines that it had sent a few weeks back. [read more]

Acknowledging the assistance sent by India, the Taliban’s spokesperson said they were “grateful for its humanitarian assistance and cooperation”.

“A few days ago, India also sent 500,000 doses of corona vaccine and many other items,” Mujahid, who is also the deputy minister for information and culture in the interim Taliban government, said in a tweet.

In August, the Taliban seized power in the country in a violent takeover, pushing the country’s already struggling economy to the brink of complete collapse. The country has been facing a severe shortage of food and medicine. Over 1 million children are at risk of death due to severe malnutrition, UN agencies have warned.

During a meeting with Taliban representatives in Moscow, Indian officials had offered to provide 50,000 metric tonnes of wheat and essential medicines to Afghans, who have been going through a “tough” time.

New Delhi had closed down its embassy in Kabul, and four other consulates following the Taliban takeover in August. In the last twenty years, India had spent close to three billion dollars on various high-impact people-centric projects in the war-torn country.

In the statement released on Friday, the MEA said, “In coming weeks, we would be supplying more batches of humanitarian assistance consisting of medicines and foodgrains to Afghanistan.”

Currently, India and Pakistan are in talks to finalize modalities for the wheat shipment which will pass through Pakistan, which did not allow Indian trucks to transit that country.



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