In response to increased violence in Afghanistan that has triggered a new wave of Afghan refugees fleeing into Tajikistan, the European Union is providing €160,000 in humanitarian aid funding to assist the most vulnerable. The aid will benefit up to 5,000 displaced Afghans in the provinces of Khatlon and Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region.

This EU-funding supports the Red Crescent Society of Tajikistan (RCST) in delivering essential relief items, including food packages, tents and household items, to meet the most urgent needs of newly-arrived Afghans at seven Tajik border points. Parts of the funding will also contribute to the preposition of RCST’s stocks of relief items in preparation to a potential influx of Afghan refugees and asylum seekers.

The funding is part of the EU’s overall contribution to the Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

Following the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan, Tajikistan, which shares a 1,357-kilometre border with Afghanistan, has over the past few weeks seen the arrival of a new wave of Afghan refugees. According to the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR), up to 50,000 refugees could  be registered in Tajikistan after the total withdrawal of American and NATO troops by the end of 2021.

Background – EU Humanitarian aid

The European Union together with its Member States is the world's leading donor of humanitarian aid. Relief assistance is an expression of European solidarity towards people in need around the world. It aims to save lives, prevent and alleviate human suffering, and safeguard the integrity and human dignity of populations affected by natural disasters and human-made crises.