UN warns drought threatens millions of Afghans with hunger, calls for extra funds

Millions of Afghans face hunger after a drought decimated crops, the UN said on Tuesday, calling for an extra $115 million to help families buy food. Two thirds of Afghanistan’s 34 provinces have been hit by a lack of rain or snowfall since late last year, according to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). The Food and Agriculture Organization said some rivers and water points have totally dried up, and the last wheat harvest has been completely lost. “Six months down the road, millions of people could be in a situation of untenable hunger without knowing where their next meal will come from,” Reuters quoted Toby Lanzer, the UN humanitarian coordinator in Afghanistan, as saying. The drought has already forced 21,000 people to leave their homes and settle on the outskirts of the western city of Herat, OCHA said.