US Sanctions Caused Mass Civilian Deaths in Iraq. Afghan Civilians Are Up Next.

One million Afghan children may die from starvation over the next several months, according to the United Nations. Nearly 23 million Afghans are facing “crisis levels of hunger” and 8.7 million are on the “brink of starvation.” This mass hunger has rendered millions of Afghans on the “verge of death,” according to UN Secretary-General António Guterres. Alongside looming mass starvation, Afghans face below-freezing temperatures, severe shortages of life-saving medical supplies, and extreme poverty, making conditions in Afghanistan among the gravest of human rights crises on Earth.

The U.S.-allied Afghan government, most recently under the rule of Ashraf Ghani, was heavily dependent on foreign aid. Following the Taliban takeover in mid-August 2021, the Biden administration and the UN Security Council instituted devastating sanctions, sharply reducing foreign aid. The Biden administration froze 9.5 billion dollars’ worth of Afghanistan’s foreign currency reserves, roughly equivalent to 40 percent of the country’s gross domestic product.

Truthout US Sanctions Caused Mass Civilian Deaths in Iraq. Afghan Civilians Are Up Next.