Government failures in Afghanistan which put lives at risk could be repeated in Ukraine, according to a damning new report.
MPs on the international development committee said they felt “ashamed” of the UK’s lacklustre support efforts for humanitarian workers and starving Afghan people in the wake of the Taliban’s rapid takeover in August.
And ministers have already displayed an “inflexible and begrudging” approach to the Ukraine crisis since Russian forces began their invasion, the report said.
MPs found the government did not provide adequate support to aid workers in Afghanistan who needed help to evacuate – some of whom now report their lives are at risk because of their links to UK projects – and its distribution of promised cash aid has been “excruciatingly slow”. They also said sanctions against the Taliban stifle the support available for women, children and minority groups.
“We are deeply grateful to aid workers – be they British, Afghan or of other nationalities – for all they have done for the people of Afghanistan,” said Sarah Champion, Labour MP and committee chair.
“But we are ashamed that the government did not give them the support that they needed during the UK’s withdrawal, or now, during the complex task of delivering an aid programme under Taliban rule.