The European Commission has pledged a further €700m to Afghanistan, taking its total funding to €1bn.
Commission president Ursula von der Leyen announced the support package earlier today, as the socio-economic situation in Afghanistan has deteriorated since the fall of Kabul to the Taliban in August.
“We must do all we can to avert a major humanitarian and socio-economic collapse in Afghanistan. We need to do it fast,” von der Leyen said.
“We have been clear about our conditions for any engagement with the Afghan authorities, including on the respect of human rights. So far, the reports speak for themselves. But the Afghan people should not pay the price of the Taliban’s actions.”
The Commission had previously set aside €300m in aid. The funds will also be available to the Afghanistan’s neighbouring countries who have been the first in providing Afghan people with help.
The newly unlocked funds follow the discussion of the EU Ministers for development to have a fresh approach to support the Afghan population, in a bid to prevent a “humanitarian catastrophe without legitimising the Taliban interim government”, the Commission said in a statement.
Despite the aid package, overall EU development aid available to Afghanistan remains frozen, to avoid it being used by the Taliban.