Impoverished Afghanistan citizens selling kidneys to feed family
Sky News’ Alex Crawford meets families in Herat who’ve sold their kidneys - and even their children - so they can eat. (Sky News photo)
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The people of Afghanistan are facing such extreme poverty, many have resorted to selling their kidneys. Afghan people are selling their kidneys on the black market in order to support their families.

One 32-year-old Afghanistan citizen said, “I had to do it for the sake of my children. I didn’t have any other option.”

Afghanis face extreme poverty due to international sanctions. The United Nations notes nearly 60% of the population is in need of humanitarian aid.

While Afghani people have previously sold organs for money, the level of poverty in the country has increased. The Taliban takeover in 2021 is to blame for the negative changes.

One city, Herat, near the border of Iran, has a settlement now known as “one kidney village.” Many of the adults are selling their kidneys in order to provide for their children.

Situation in Afghanistan reaches breaking point as selling kidneys becomes more frequent

Meanwhile, Afghanistan citizens have yet to receive much in terms of international aid. The Biden Administration froze Afghani peoples’ assets when the Taliban took over in 2021.

Peter Kessler, a UN Refugee Agency spokesman based in Kabul, told The BMJ that “Negative coping mechanisms like selling kidneys, or even children, are a tragic symptom of Afghanistan’s economic crisis.” He noted that over 3 million people in Afghanistan have been displaced since 2021.

Afghanistan citizens make up to $1500 per kidney. The Taliban takeover lowered the price from an original high of $3000 to $4000.

Additionally, many Afghanistan parents are selling their daughters into marriage. Afghanis also sell young children to childless couples.

One Afghanistan citizen who sold their kidney said, “??I regret it now. I can no longer work. I’m in pain and I cannot lift anything heavy.”

Afghanistan, which is home to over 38 million people, is now in desperate need of humanitarian aid to address the crisis. Kessler, of the United Nations stated, “The needs are enormous. Millions of people are on the brink of famine.”

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Erika Stone is a graduate student in the Master of Social Work program at the University of Oklahoma, and a graduate assistant at Schusterman Library. A Chess Memorial Scholar, she has a B.A. in Psychology...