Kabul-based journalist Masood Shnizai discusses the devastating effects of the ongoing U.S. sanctions against Afghanistan.
THE NORMALLY RESERVED International Committee of the Red Cross recently made a surprisingly direct statement about the unfolding economic and humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. They said, “Can the international community” — meaning the U.S. — “hold 39 million people hostage to the fact that they do not want to recognise the authorities that are now in place in Kabul and in Afghanistan?”
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Masood Shnizai is a journalist based in Kabul, Afghanistan. He joins Ryan Grim to discuss the devastating effects of the ongoing U.S. sanctions, and why the calls for help seem to be falling on deaf ears in the Biden administration.
Extreme poverty drives Afghans to sell vital organs to feed families
Many of Afghanistan's growing number of destitute people are making desperate decisions as their nation spirals into poverty, with some even taking the drastic measure of selling their vital organs.
In the western province of Herat, people in dire need of money have taken to risking their lives by selling their kidneys.
The country's economy was already teetering when the Taliban seized power in mid-August, amid a chaotic withdrawal of US and NATO forces.
The international community froze Afghanistan's assets abroad and halted all funding, unwilling to work with a Taliban government, given its reputation for brutality during its previous rule 20 years ago.
The consequences have been devastating for a country battered by four decades of war, with a lack of jobs and increasing economic challenges hitting the most vulnerable members of society hardest.