Kabul, Afghanistan/New York, November 13, 2001 — This morning, a team from the international medical aid agency Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) managed to reach Kabul from the Panjshir Valley in Afghanistan. The international team of four consists of a doctor, a nurse, an administrator, and a logistician. They have re-established full contact with MSF's Afghan staff in Kabul and are visiting the city's health structures to assess the health needs of the population.
MSF is currently trying to re-establish a normal international presence in the other locations where it works in Afghanistan, including Mazar-I-Sharif and Herat. On September 14, rising insecurity in the Taliban-controlled areas of Afghanistan forced MSF to evacuate approximately 70 international staff. Since that time, MSF's 400 Afghan employees have continued to maintain most of the organizations' relief programs in the Taliban-controlled areas of the country. MSF's relief programs in the Northern Alliance-controlled areas of northeastern Afghanistan have continued normally since September 11.
MSF has been working in Afghanistan since 1979 and currently has teams in Pakistan, Iran, Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan to provide support to the organization's Afghan relief efforts and assistance to Afghan refugees.