KABUL: The first batch of Saudi aid arrived in Afghanistan on Monday and will be delivered to the people of Herat, the Afghan Red Crescent Society said, as international relief efforts continued following deadly earthquakes that hit the western province over the weekend.
More than 2,000 people are feared dead after a series of powerful quakes that devastated western Afghanistan on Saturday, which also injured around 1,200 people and destroyed at least 1,300 houses.
The Saudi aid agency KSrelief is donating more than 15,000 food packages, worth a total of $2 million, to be distributed by its local partner, the Afghan Red Crescent Society.
“KSrelief has offered food items in aid for those affected by the earthquake in Zinda Jan district of western Herat province,” Irrfanullah Sharfzoi, the society’s spokesman, said.
“The center handed over 2,250 of 15,750 food packages of various food items worth $2 million to the Afghan Red Crescent Society on Monday.”
Each of the packages contained 62 kilograms of different food items, he added.
“We are grateful to KSrelief for always reaching out to citizens in need in difficult situations,” Maulvi Abdultif Sabit, the society’s deputy secretary-general, said.
The center is among other international aid groups sending help for survivors of the quake, the second major tremor to hit Afghanistan in just over a year.
“The situation is worse than we imagined with people in devastated villages still desperately trying to rescue survivors from under the rubble with their bare hands,” Thamindri de Silva, national director at World Vision in Afghanistan, said.
“People need urgent medical care, water, food, shelter, and help to stay safe.”