FIFA Evacuates 100 Afghan Refugees

Members of the national women’s football team are among 100 refugees that have been evacuated from Afghanistan by FIFA.

According to the Independent, at least 20 members of the Afghan women’s football team, including players and coaches, left Kabul on Thursday, bound for Doha, among 100 other refugees, made up of mostly women and girls.

The rescue plan was developed by FIFA, who worked closely with the Qatari government, and a source close to the operation said that the group have now landed in Doha, and are pleased to be safe.

“This has been a long negotiation since August to get the group out,” they said.

The Independent understands that FIFA, the international governing body for football, will continue to try and secure safe passage for further players and their families from the country that fell under Taliban control back in August. The newspaper revealed in September that 32 girls from the national team were stranded in the war-torn country.

The refugees were issued passports and official documentation before they left Kabul, but there are no details on where they will go from Doha, but Pakistan’s prime minister, Imran Khan, has been urged to allow the girls and their families to be allowed to enter Pakistan on temporary visas.

The group, which includes players, support staff, and coaches, are all involved in promoting women’s football in Afghanistan.

As the Taliban advanced on Kabul in August, around 14,000 people were airlifted from the city, including many British citizens, but thousands more were left behind, and there have been growing fears for the future of women in the country.

 

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