News Alert: Humanitarian Catastrophe Looms in Afghanistan as Thousands of Civilians Descend Upon Kabul

August 14, 2021

Thousands of civilians continue arriving in Kabul, Afghanistan in search of safety as Afghans across every province in the country flee rapidly intensifying conflict. The UN reports some 390,000 people have fled the violence since January, with more than 3.5 million displaced in total, and the number of people in need of humanitarian assistance has nearly doubled since last year.


Based in Kabul, Ram Kishan, Mercy Corps’ Asia Deputy Regional Director says: 

“Afghanistan is on the brink of a massive humanitarian catastrophe. With people arriving in Kabul en masse, there is a surge in humanitarian need, but it’s happening so rapidly we don’t yet know the full scale of the situation or what the coming days and weeks will bring beyond more displacement and chaos. We are hearing reports of increased civilian casualties and destruction of homes and businesses across the country. We are working quickly to get clean water and sanitation supplies to those families who recently fled to Kabul, and we will stay as long as we safely can. 

“It is essential the U.S. government and all international donors maintain support for humanitarian organizations that are partnering with Afghans to provide urgently needed assistance. Afghans are in their most critical hour of need, and the world must not abandon them.”


Since 1986, Mercy Corps has been working to improve the quality of life for Afghans and support conflict-affected communities. Last year, we reached over 370,000 people across the country, creating jobs and providing access to energy and clean water.