Germany is expecting a fresh wave of Afghan refugees amid the worsening economic situation in the war-ravaged country, the nation's interior minister said on Wednesday.
Speaking at a news conference in Berlin on the situation of migrants in Germany, Horst Seehofer said while he is "expecting an increase" in the number of Afghan refugees over the coming months, he could "not predict" the actual size of the refugee wave.
"We are also increasingly registering that Afghans (refugees) who had been flown out to other European countries are moving towards Germany. Refugees from Afghanistan are currently ranked second in Germany with 13,644 people," the minister added.
Germany has repeatedly warned of a looming humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan after the Taliban's takeover in August resulted in a mass exodus of aid workers and subsequent funding cut.
"A severe humanitarian crisis is emerging before our eyes that we must absolutely avoid," German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said last month.
Maas has repeatedly criticized Afghanistan's new government after the Taliban named ministers whose inclusion triggered serious doubts over its willingness to meet international conditions for diplomatic recognition and humanitarian assistance.
According to the UN, some 50 % of the Afghan population is in need of humanitarian assistance.
International aid agencies have raised the alarm over an "impending humanitarian crisis" in Afghanistan, with medical charity Doctors Without Borders saying the Central Asian country's vulnerable healthcare system is facing a "potential collapse".