KABUL, Afghanistan – At least 80 people were killed and hundreds more went missing in floods late Wednesday night in a Taliban-controlled area in eastern Afghanistan.
The flood swept most of the village in Nuristan Province, destroyed about 200 homes and caught many of the residents off guard as they slept. On Thursday night, villagers found around 80 bodies, but as the search continues, local officials expect the death toll to exceed 200.
“It disappeared, nothing remained after the flood,” said county resident Abdul Naser, who visited the village on Thursday. No help has come yet, and there are no measures for coffins, coffins and funerals.
The flash flood was the final blow for Afghanistan, where the war between government forces and the Taliban has displaced hundreds of thousands of people in recent months and brought the country to the brink of a stalemate. humanitarian crisis, charities say. Since international troops began withdrawing in May, the Taliban has made rapid military advances across the country, taking control of more than half of the country’s 400-odd areas.
But as the militant group continues to attack, it increases the likelihood of an attack. complete Taliban takeoverMany questioned whether they would be able to effectively govern the war-affected and foreign aid-dependent country if they seized power. The flooding in Kamdesh region presented an early test for the Taliban’s ability to provide relief services in areas they control – a sign of effective governance.
On Thursday afternoon, local officials called on the Taliban to grant aid groups access to the area to provide emergency services. However, search and rescue teams were unable to reach the remote village in the afternoon, largely because the Taliban controlled the roads leading to the district, according to a statement from the Disaster Management Ministry. Local disaster management committees in the nearby Kunar and Laghman provinces were working to get rescue teams to the area.
“The area is under Taliban control, if the Taliban allow us, we will bring aid to the region,” said Hafiz Abdul Qayyum, Governor of Nuristan Province.
In a statement Thursday evening, Zabihullah Mujahid, a Taliban spokesman, said the group welcomes the help of aid organizations.
Flooding in northern and eastern Afghanistan is not unusual at this time of year. In August last year, flood in CharikarA city at the foot of the Hindu Kush mountains in northern Afghanistan has killed at least 92 people and injured 108 others.
But the flash flooding in Nuristan came this summer when extreme weather took a dire toll worldwide, and scientists have warned that warming caused by greenhouse gas emissions is changing the climate. Heavy rainfall is a visible sign of this shift, as a warmer atmosphere can hold more moisture and produce stronger rain.
This month alone, floods occur once in a thousand years. or more rarely killed at least 170 people It has caused billions in damage across Europe and after the destruction of homes, businesses, vehicles, electrical and sewer systems. flood waters frightened passengers stranded in sunken subway carsswept cars and caused power outages in Zhengzhou, Chinese. And monsoons It caused a flood in the Grand Canyon in the United States.
Flash flooding has become increasingly common in Afghanistan in recent years after widespread deforestation has largely destroyed open woodlands and closed forests that once slowed the flow of water down the mountains. With poor governance and entrenched conflicts that put people in additional danger, Afghanistan consistently ranks as one of the world’s most vulnerable countries to climate change. According to the World Bank.
According to the United Nations, 75 percent of the 110,000 Afghans affected by some type of natural disaster so far this year have experienced flooding.
Fahim Abed reported from Kabul, Afghanistan and Zabihullah Ghazi from Jalalabad.