Thousands of displaced Afghans get UN aid
ISLAMABAD, Jan 21 (AFP) - Thousands of Afghans displaced by fighting have received desperately needed relief supplies in Darra Souf valley in northern Samangan province in Afghanistan, a UN official said Friday.
The supplies, including 150 tonnes of wheat, were transported in a four-week operation launched in the middle of December, acting UN regional coordination officer Michael Semple told reporters.
Semple, who looks after humanitarian needs in Afghanistan's central Hazarajat region, said in addition to wheat more than 15,000 tents, blankets and quilts were also delivered.
The operation was the first in the area making large-scale use of donkeys to ferry the material along hazardous mountain routes via neighbouring Bamiyan province.
Darra Souf valley is controlled by the Afghan opposition but it is surrounded by territory held by the ruling Afghan Taliban militia, who also hold Bamiyan, an area populated by the ethnic minority Hazarat community.
"The operation was completed without any mishap as a result of cooperation from the locals and warring sides," Semple said.
The valley was hit by continual fighting throughout last year, displacing around 5,000 families from their homes.
About 1,000 displaced families were provided wheat donated by the World Food Programme and another 2,000 received non-food items given by other donors, the UN official said.
Turkey covered part of the total 100,000-dollar cost of the operation, he said, without specifying how much.
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