Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Harsh Winter Has Afghans Struggling For Survival (5 Years After Invasion, Many in Kabul Lack Central Heat, Water, Power)

More than five years after the U.S.-led overthrow of Islamic Taliban rule and the advent of an internationally backed civilian government, the country is still so destitute and undeveloped that most inhabitants have no central heating, electricity or running water. Even in Kabul, some desperate families remain beyond the reach of foreign aid agencies that provide cold-weather assistance such as free coal and blankets in impoverished rural provinces. --- Winter is the time that most starkly sets apart Kabul's nouveau riche from its permanent poor. -- The cozy, generator-heated homes and winking shop lights of central neighborhoods such as Wazir Akbar Khan and Shar-i-Nau, home to Afghan officials and international agency employees, seem far removed from the pitch-dark alleys and frigid rented rooms of suburban slums such as Chelsitoon and Char Qala.


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