Poverty forces family in Balkh to attempt selling child

Monitoring Desk

Balkh: Local officials in Balkh province said that they assisted a family who wanted to sell their child, who is less than two years old, because of the family’s difficult economic situation.
“We held a meeting with the Red Cross for a few days; we will make members of these institutions aware of how to assist us,” said Noorul Hadi Abu Idris, the deputy governor of Balkh. “There was some food in the Red Cross warehouses in Balkh province, and we assisted this family to better their economic situation,” said Yar Mohammad Farooqi, the head of the Red Crescent in the northern region.
The child’s mother said that she was forced to try and sell her child because of extreme poverty. However, the local Balkh official said that they had assisted the child’s family and stopped the child from being sold. “I’m in a really difficult situation; I have nothing to eat or use for fuel; I haven’t made any preparations for the winter. I have to sell my daughter and get some items for the winter,” said Nasrin, the mother of the child. Nasrin said that neither the local government nor humanitarian agencies have offered her any assistance in more than a year’s time.
“I myself went to the authorities two or three times and begged them to put my name on the list in case assistance is offered. They replied that we have put down your name, but so far I have not received any support,” Nasrin said. “Our living conditions are really difficult; please help us so that my sister will not be sold,” said Muska, another daughter of Nasrin.
“It has been two or three days since I heard that they are selling their daughter. I swear to God that I can’t eat,” said Shahkhanum, a neighbor of Nasrin. Religious clerics said that selling children is immoral and urged the government to assist poor families. “Selling human beings has been forbidden by God,” said Mohammad Ibrahim, a religious leader.
A year ago, the father of this child worked as a cook in one of Mazar-e-Sharif’s hotels, but due to poverty this family was ready to sell their child in order to feed their other children