An Afghan soccer player who was playing for the national youth team has died after trying to hang onto a US plane carrying people from Taliban-controlled Kabul.
The Afghan Directorate General of Physical Education and Sports, a government institution that works with sports groups, confirmed Zaki Anwari’s death at the airport this week.
“Anwari, like thousands of Afghan youths, wanted to leave the country but fell from a US plane and died,” the group said in a statement posted on Facebook.
Thousands of Afghans flocked to the airport this week in an attempt to flee the country in the wake of a thunderbolt attack by the Taliban that ended with them taking power after President Ashraf Ghani fled.
The Taliban must decide whether they want international recognition – Biden
Escape to safety – a portrait of the chaotic exodus from Kabul
Chaos at Kabul airport as desperate Afghans seek to flee
In a horrific video clip from the airport, on Monday, hundreds of people were seen running alongside a US Air Force plane as it accelerated onto the runway, with several men holding onto its side.
Other clips surfaced on social media showing two people falling to their deaths from a C-17 after takeoff.
The US military confirmed that human remains were later found in a wheel well, adding that it was investigating the reported deaths linked to the C-17.
“Before the aircrew could drop the payload, hundreds of Afghan civilians surrounded the plane,” said US Air Force spokeswoman Anne Stefanik.
“Faced with the rapidly deteriorating security situation around the aircraft, the C-17 crew decided to leave the airport as quickly as possible.”
Meanwhile, Afghan International Olympic Committee member Samira Asgari called on the United States to help evacuate the country’s top female athletes and coaching staff “before it is too late” in the wake of the Taliban takeover of her country.
During their 1996-2001 rule, guided by Islamic law, the Taliban banned women from working.
Girls were not allowed to go to school and women had to wear a burqa to go out, and then only when accompanied by a male relative.
The Taliban said they would respect women’s rights under Islamic law.
However, former basketball captain Ms. Asghari said she fears for the safety of the athletes.
The 27-year-old, referring to the NBA, United States, tweeted: “The players, coaches and their entourage in Afghanistan need your help, we must get them out of the hands of the Taliban… Please do something before it’s too late.” Olympic and Paralympic Committee and US Ambassador to Afghanistan.
Copenhagen-based former Afghan women’s soccer captain Khaleda Popal has urged players to delete social media, erase public identities and burn their groups for their own safety now that the country is once again under Taliban rule.
On Monday, the Afghan Paralympic Committee said that two athletes will not be able to attend the Paralympic Games in Tokyo, which will begin on August 24.
“Lector profesional. Jugador galardonado. Aficionado a los zombis. Adicto a las redes sociales. Experto en tocino. Erudito en Internet”