Middle East/North Africa

Players from Afghan women’s national soccer team evacuated from Kabul

A young child looks out the window of a plane as they are being evacuated out of Kabul.
Getty images

Players from the Afghan women’s national soccer team have been evacuated from Kabul amid the recent Taliban takeover. 

In a statement on TuesdayFIFPRO, a global soccer players union, thanked the Australian government for helping evacuate the women’s national team and other Afghan athletes from the country. 

“These young women, both as athletes and activists, have been in a position of danger and on behalf of their peers around the world we thank the international community for coming to their aid,” FIFPRO said in a statement. 

Former Afghan women’s national team captain Khalida Popal, who was one of the FIFPRO advisers that helped in the evacuation, said in the news release that this was a “important victory.”

“The last few days have been extremely stressful but today we have achieved an important victory. The women footballers have been brave and strong in a moment of crisis and we hope they will have a better life outside Afghanistan,” Popal said. “But there is still much more work to do. Women’s football is a family and we must make sure everyone is safe.”

The evacuation comes amid the recent fall of the Afghan government as the Taliban took control of Kabul last week, regaining full control for the first time since 2001, when U.S. troops arrived there in response to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

International Paralympic Committee President Andrew Parsons said on Monday that the Afghan flag will be flown at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics games.

Tags Afghanistan FIFPRO Kabul Paralympic Games

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