NewsCovering America

Actions

Effort underway to rescue girls soccer team from Afghanistan

Afghanistan Girls Soccer Team
Posted at 4:52 PM, Sep 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-01 19:52:32-04

An international effort is underway to evacuate members of Afghanistan's girls' national soccer team and their families over fears of reprisal by the Taliban.

The effort known as Operation Soccer Balls suffered a setback last week after a suicide bombing at the airport in Kabul.

There have been at least five failed attempts to rescue the girls in recent days as they were moved around for their safety.

Most members of the Afghan women's team were evacuated to Australia last week.

The Taliban forbid women and girls to play sports.

According to the Associated Press, the girls, ages 14-16, are targets of the Taliban because they advocated for girls and active members within their communities.

Another complication the team faces is the group's size - 133 people, including the 26 youth team members, the AP reported.

Another roadblock is that many of them don’t have passports or other necessary documentation to board flights from Kabul.