According to the latest data released by the Afghan Ministry of Health, there are about 54,000 confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus and more than 2,300 deaths in Afghanistan.
However, given Afghanistan’s limited detection capacity, these data may not be far from reflecting the real epidemic in Afghanistan.
According to a survey released by the Afghan Ministry of Health in August 2020, it is estimated that more than 10 million people in the country have been infected with the novel coronavirus, accounting for about one-third of the country’s total population.
After landing at Kabul Airport, the plane saw military helicopters parked at the airport through the porthole, and the unique atmosphere of the city came to you. Security personnel holding automatic rifles can be seen in the airport.
However, compared with strict security, epidemic prevention and control measures are much weaker. Not all ground crews wear masks, and there is no mandatory requirement for passengers to wear masks at the airport.
The only road out of the airport is blocked, and some passengers in the surrounding vehicles are also carrying guns, but basically no one wears a mask.
Walking to Masood Square, a landmark in Kabul, my colleagues told me that rockets were attacked near the square the year before last. Passing by a mosque, colleagues added that there had also been attacks there.
There used to be a Lebanese restaurant near the residence, but a raid killed 21 people in early 2014. The violence is difficult to describe in this city and country, and it is shocking to hear.
Careful colleagues took me to the nearby supermarket to buy some daily necessities. I went to two supermarkets successively, and there were gun security personnel at the door. The door of the supermarket is closed.
After the security personnel confirm that the visitor is not threatened, they will inform another gatekeeper inside the iron gate. Only when the gatekeeper opens the door, the door will be locked immediately after the guest enters.
It was only known that one of the supermarkets was attacked in 2011, and militants fired indiscriminately at customers in the supermarket; another supermarket was seriously attacked in 2017, killing hundreds of people.
For supermarkets, security is big, and epidemic prevention may not be the biggest pain point. Security personnel and staff do not wear masks, and only my colleagues and I wear masks among the customers.
In the final analysis, in Afghanistan, years of war, attacks, violence, bloodshed and other lingering haze of death may be more shocking than the epidemic that has hit the world hard. This is the deplorable and helpless reality in Afghanistan.
Colleagues who have worked in Afghanistan for more than three years and reported countless emergencies are calm: “Don’t worry, you will get used to it after staying here for a long time. This is life.
May violence and epidemics be far away from the lives of people in this land as soon as possible.