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Afghanistan: More than $1bn pledged for Afghanistan





More than $1bn (£720,000) in aid has been pledged for Afghanistan, following warnings from the United Nations of a "looming catastrophe".


The plea for global support was made at a conference in Geneva, following the Taliban's takeover last month.


The UN said the country was facing a major humanitarian crisis.


After decades of war and suffering, it was "perhaps their most perilous hour", Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said.


The poverty rate was "spiralling" and public services were close to collapse, he told the conference.


"Many people could run out of food by the end of this month just as winter approaches," he warned.


The UN had called for $606m to be raised, saying this would bring "vital relief" to millions.


Mr Guterres said it was unclear how much of the more than $1bn promised would go towards the UN appeal.


The UN has urged the Taliban to give aid workers unimpeded access.


Even before the Islamist militants retook control of Afghanistan in August, fighting forced more than 550,000 people to flee their homes.


An estimated 3.5 million people are currently internally displaced within the country. Afghans have also had to deal with a severe drought.

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