March Quarterly Donor Update
In the aftermath of the Taliban movement’s return to power, Afghanistan’s faltering economy has slid towards collapse as a nationwide humanitarian crisis continues, with the majority of the country unable to feed itself.
Crisis Action has focused its efforts on working with partners to push the Biden administration towards a policy shift on financial restrictions on the country given the devastating impact on civilian populations.
Pushing the US administration to ease financial restrictions to prevent a complete economic collapse
In an effort catalysed by Crisis Action and our partners, nearly 50 Congressional Democrats called on President Biden to “urgently modify current U.S. policy regarding the freeze of Afghanistan’s foreign reserves and ongoing sanctions”. As a follow up to this letter, congress forced a vote on the White House position on Afghanistan’s economy. This is a significant milestone towards pushing Biden towards a US policy shift which Crisis Action and partners judged would more likely happen if Biden is if called directly to do so by Democrats in the House and Senate. Crisis Action:
- Coordinated a joint letter signed by a coalition of prominent Afghan voices including political experts, academics, journalists and economists calling on President Biden to act before Afghanistan is plunged into its worst humanitarian crisis in 43 years.
- Organised a meeting between letter signatories and staff members of the US National Security Council to discuss what steps the US could take to ease economic pressure on Afghanistan.
- Facilitated a meeting for partners to meet with the U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan, Tom West.
- Briefed 10 key Democratic Congressional offices on the essential connection between the worsening humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan and the collapse of the Afghan banking sector.
- Worked with partners to provide alternative policy options to Congressional offices to address the economic collapse.
- Spurred influential Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal, chair of the Progressive Caucus in the House, who drafted a letter to the Biden administration that echoed the analysis and proposals of our partners. Crisis Action helped mobilise signatories for this letter among House Democrats and about 50 congress members signed it.