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Food Aid Arrives for Refugees in Northern Afghanistan - 2001-10-01


The north of Afghanistan is receiving its first distribution of food aid in three months. Two hundred tons of wheat are being supplied to camps sheltering refugees from the war with the Taleban.

The first delivery of 50 tons of wheat arrived at a refugee camp in northern Afghanistan Monday. This amount will support 2,000 families for a month, according to ACTED, the French-based international agency that is distributing the aid.

There are approximately 10,000 refugees in this region. They arrived just over a year ago after the Taleban conquered the nearby town of Halekan. More refugees are beginning to arrive as part of the internal displacement from Taleban-controlled Afghanistan.

ACTED is pre-positioning food and assistance so that it is able to respond quickly if the need arises and there is a flood of refugees northward.

The aid agency is concerned that the onset of winter will make its job much more difficult.

In northern Afghanistan, most of the population lives in remote regions.

In winter many cannot be reached by cars and trucks; instead, camels and donkeys have to be loaded with supplies to cross the mountain paths. In some cases the aid agency will have to ask people to walk for two or three days to a lower town to collect the food.

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