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H.  9 Jumada I 1444 No: 1444 AH / 020
M.  Saturday, 03 December 2022

Press Release
Afghan Families Drug their Children to Cope with Starvation

On November 24, 2022, the BBC reported on the devastating food shortages that plague Afghanistan. The crisis is such that Abdul Wahab, a village father, is quoted as saying, "Our children keep crying, and they don't sleep. We have no food. So we go to the pharmacy, get tablets and give them to our children, so they feel drowsy." The World Food Programme (WFP) released statistics that over 20 million people – half the population – are suffering either level-3 "crisis" or level-4 "emergency" levels of food insecurity. Over one million children under 5 are at risk of dying with rising levels of food deprivation and prolonged exposure to acute malnutrition. The effects of starvation on young people cannot be reversed by simply increasing food supplies. The fact is, medically, when children have their growth and development stunted, even if they survive, they face significant health problems. The WFP reported that tens of thousands of people in one province, Ghor, had slipped into "catastrophic" level-5 acute malnutrition, a precursor to famine. Overall, over 90 percent of Afghans have been suffering from food insecurity since last August 2022. The practice of skipping meals or whole days of eating and engaging in extreme coping mechanisms to pay for food, including sending children to work, has become normalized. The latest practice of drugging children is evidence of people's desperate measures to reduce the suffering of the little ones in danger. In Herat province, one brother Ghulam Hazrat showed journalists the strip of alprazolam tablets he uses. These tranquilizers treat anxiety disorders. However, when given to children they can cause kidney and liver disease. Escitalopram and sertraline are also available at the price of a piece of bread.

This horrific situation of poisoning children instead of nurturing them results from the Islamic leadership of the Khilafah (Caliphate) based on the method of the Prophethood being absent. The US and other governments, along with the World Bank Group, revoked the credentials of the Central Bank of Afghanistan to punish the Taliban's takeover on August 15, 2021. John Sifton, Asia’s director of Human Rights Watch, said: "Afghanistan's intensifying hunger and health crisis is urgent and at its root a banking crisis. Regardless of the Taliban's status or credibility with outside governments, international economic restrictions still drive the country's catastrophe and hurt the Afghan people." Afghanistan's Central Bank cannot access its foreign currency reserves and cannot process or receive most international transactions. As a result, the country continues to suffer from a significant liquidity crisis and a lack of banknotes. In addition, businesses, humanitarian groups, and private banks continue to report extensive restrictions on their operational capacities. At the same time, because outside donors have severely cut funding to support Afghanistan's health, education, and other essential sectors, millions of Afghans have lost their incomes.

The majority of aid and funds over the past 20 years went to American and European contractors, and no infrastructure has been built in Afghanistan, which is part of the reason why the country is currently poor and suffers from food insecurity despite the fact that invaders used their enormous wealth in their war against Islam and Muslims. Additionally, little was done to guarantee a sustainable economy and food security that could function independently of Western aid. Afghanistan is the ideal example of what Allah (swt) says about kings who invade and degrade a nation. Allah (swt) says:

[قَالَتْ إِنَّ الْمُلُوكَ إِذَا دَخَلُوا قَرْيَةً أَفْسَدُوهَا وَجَعَلُوا أَعِزَّةَ أَهْلِهَا أَذِلَّةً وَكَذَلِكَ يَفْعَلُونَ]

The queen said, "When the kings enter a land, they ruin it and debase its honorable people; they do just the same.” [An-Naml: 34].

Allah (swt) never accepts that Muslims live with their affairs in the control of non-Muslim entities in which Allah (swt) says: 

[وَلَن يَجْعَلَ اللَّهُ لِلْكَافِرِينَ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ سَبِيلا]

“and never will Allah give the disbelievers over the believers a way [to overcome them].” [An-Nisaa: 141].

Therefore, we must work for the return of the second Khilafah Rashidah (rightly guided Caliphate) upon the method of the Prophethood that will implement Islam comprehensively and return guardianship and protection to this Ummah, including to our dear children and rescue them from suffering. Allah (swt) says:

[يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ اسْتَجِيبُواْ لِلّهِ وَلِلرَّسُولِ إِذَا دَعَاكُم لِمَا يُحْيِيكُمْ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ يَحُولُ بَيْنَ الْمَرْءِ وَقَلْبِهِ وَأَنَّهُ إِلَيْهِ تُحْشَرُونَ]

“O you who have believed, respond to Allah and to the Messenger when he calls you to that which gives you life. And know that Allah intervenes between a man and his heart and that to Him you will be gathered.” [Al-Anfal: 24].

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