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Afghan Kidney Sales

Selling vital organs to survive

Afghan Kidney Sales is the new film by RT Documentary, which explores the phenomenon of selling kidneys in the Afghan region of Herat. Locals, exhausted by constant debt and a lack of decent jobs, resort to selling their kidneys on the black market.

Though they can only expect about 250,000 afghanis for the kidney, which is about $3,000, with an average wage of 200 afghani a day, this seems like a tremendous amount of money. But the consequences of these surgeries very often cost a lot more. Conducted improperly and without any post-op observation, they lead to permanent health problems or even disability. People who had next to no chance of finding a job when they were healthy are now unemployable.

The situation is aggravated as Herat has become a popular spot to buy a kidney. Many poor people from the area admit themselves to the hospital, putting their organs up for sale. A kidney costs 350,000 afghanis with another 100,000 for the surgery. Clients from Europe and America eagerly come here because an operation here is more affordable. The Governor's office denies the possibility of a kidney black market and points at the lack of evidence.

Yet, more and more people are driven to the point they are willing to part with their vital organs no matter the consequences. What tragic stories do they have to tell?