UAE sends medical aid, food supplies to quake-hit Afghanistan

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Friday sent 38 tons of medical aid and food supplies to families in Afghanistan affected by a recent earthquake in the country, state press agency WAM reported.

At least 13 people were killed and more than 90 injured after a magnitude 6.5 earthquake struck Afghanistan and Pakistan just over a week ago.

“The provision of these supplies is part of the UAE’s enduring efforts to provide urgent relief to countries affected by natural disasters and enhance humanitarian support for vulnerable groups such as women, children, and the elderly,” WAM said on Friday evening.

The epicenter of the quake was in the Hindu Kush mountains, in the sparsely populated northeastern Afghan province of Badakhshan, 40 km (25 miles) southeast of Jurm village, at the considerable depth of 187 km (116 miles), the US Geological Survey said at the time.

The quake was felt over an area more than 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) wide by some 285 million people in Pakistan, India, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Afghanistan and Turkmenistan, according to the European-Mediterranean Seismological Centre.

In June last year, the UAE built a 1,000 square meter field hospital with 75 beds that could treat up to 200 patients per day after another earthquake struck Khost in southeastern Afghanistan, according to WAM.

From 2021 to 2022, the UAE sent a total of 28 planes carrying 623 tons of medical and food supplies to the country, WAM said. This aid benefitted around 1.1 million people including 850,000 women and children.

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