Gambia Calls On Int’l Community to Address Humanitarian Crisis in Afghanistan

BANJUL, 21 December, 2021: The Hon. Minister of Foreign Affairs, His Excellency Dr. Mamadou Tangara, on Sunday urged the international community at the 17th Extraordinary Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers Meeting in Islamabad to address the growing influx of internally displaced persons and refugees as a result of the armed conflict and the effect of COVID-19 in Afghanistan.

“The Gambia therefore urges all Member States, Islamic Financial Institutions and partners to act urgently to provide humanitarian aid to areas of greatest need, in addition to the reconstruction efforts in the country,” Foreign Minister Tangara appealed to Council of Foreign Ministers in Pakistan.

Minister Tangara said in line with the objective of Joint Islamic Solidarity, it is indeed a duty to provide full support and solidarity to the Afghan people and stand with them in this hour of need as was emphasised in the Communique issued following the Extraordinary Executive Meeting in Jeddah 4 months ago.

Below is the full excerpt of statement by H.E. Dr. Mamadou Tangara, Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad at the 17th Extraordinary Session of the Council of Foreign Ministers (CFM) meeting in Islamabad, Islamic Republic of Pakistan.

Your Excellency Mr. Chairman,

Your Excellency Mr. Shah Mahmood Qureshi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan,

Secretary General of the OIC, Mr. Hissein Ibrahim Taha,

Honourable Ministers,

Distinguished Delegates

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Asalamu Alaikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatu,

It is with great honour that I address you on this special occasion of this 17th Extraordinary Council of Foreign Ministers. I would like first and foremost to express my sincere gratitude and that of my delegation to The President, Prime Minister and Government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan for convening this critical Meeting and for the generous hospitality accorded to us since our arrival in Islamabad.

Let me also commend The Custodian of The Two Holy Mosques, His Majesty King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud and The Crown Prince, His Royal Highness Prince Mohammed bin Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud (May Allah preserve them) for the initiative they have taken to call up this very important meeting, as Chair of the Islamic Summit.

Mr. Chairman,

Following the convening of the Extraordinary Open-Ended Meeting of the Executive Committee in Jeddah last August, we have been following with great concern the humanitarian situation in Afghanistan; a situation which, unfortunately, has deteriorated very rapidly and urgently calls for a concerted action to mitigate its consequences.

The need to address this humanitarian crisis is due to the growing influx of internally displaced persons and refugees as a result of the armed conflict in this country, and the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Gambia therefore urges all Member States, Islamic Financial Institutions and partners to act urgently to provide humanitarian aid to areas of greatest need, in addition to the reconstruction efforts in the country.

In line with the objective of Joint Islamic Solidarity, it is indeed our duty to provide full support and solidarity to the Afghan people and stand with them in this hour of need as was emphasised in the Communique issued following the Extraordinary Executive Meeting in Jeddah 4 months ago.

Mr. Chairman,

Coming from a country that has majority Muslim population, I am saddened by the grave situation in Afghanistan. We should take decisive action now because Afghanistan is still on the brink of another dangerous chapter.

The humanitarian situation is growing by the hour. Hospitals have over flooded; food and medical supplies are dwindling. Children and women are suffering. The Country is facing the worst humanitarian crisis the world shall ever witness leading to abject poverty, hunger, disease and death.

Your Excellencies,

Mr. Chairman,

Honourable Ministers,

Distinguished Delegates,