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In Afghanistan, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) signed an agreement to provide funds for housing and infrastructure in Khost and Paktika Province.  The programme will assist families impacted by the earthquake there.

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi expressed deep concern today over the increasing violence and serious human rights violations against refugees and migrants at European borders.  He noted that many European States have failed to investigate, despite mounting and credible evidence.

Amid the continued humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, the World Food Programme (WFP) reports that it provided food to nearly 150,000 people and cash assistance to 6,000 on 14 December.  Some 100 food shops and other businesses have closed in Jalalabad city due to currency devaluation and high food and commodity prices.

The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) says more children and women were abducted for ransom between January and August 2021 than during the entire 2020.  UNICEF estimates based on official sources say 71 women and 30 children were abducted in the first eight months of 2021, and 59 women and 37 children in 2020.

Today marks three years since the death of former Secretary-General Kofi Annan.  As the current Secretary-General said, Kofi was one-of-a-kind, a man who embodied United Nations values.  Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed said that, on this day three years ago, the world lost one of its moral voices.