Calls on the New Zealand government to provide emergency visas to Afghan women threatened by the Taliban
“I don’t know if the Taliban will kill me or not,” said one woman.
It is the fear of those who live in a society that has no special place for women or girls under the Taliban regime.
“I don’t want to go from being an active, active woman to a housewife,” the woman says.
Newshub agreed not to name her, but she is part of the Ascend Athletics leadership program, which gives young Afghan girls an education and a chance to climb mountains, literally and figuratively.
But this path to a better life has been blocked with the risk of being kidnapped and married.
“You have no options, you’ll wait at home and you will be told what to do and who to marry, bear kids and clean the house and that’s it,” said Marina LeGree, founder of Ascend Athletics.
Before the takeover, they had options – a frequent adventure through the ups and downs of the Panjshir Valley.
But this week again, in the same area, the Taliban killed civilians at random.
Some of the more than 100 participants in the program received a second chance.
“Ten families are going to Chile, which is a wonderful thing, 20 visas to Ireland so it’s individuals and Denmark has taken two families,” LeGree says.
Now they want New Zealand’s help in granting emergency visas to a family of five, including the woman in our story.
But any help from our government seems far away. He has yet to update his plans for further assistance since our last evacuation flights three weeks ago.
“The next steps in supporting those who already have the legal right to be in New Zealand and other assistance we may be able to provide,” said Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
Aid that could change the lives of young Afghan women.
“Let me be very clear. New Zealand is amazing… that would be the dream,” said LeGree.
“We had a lot of dreams, we had a lot of hope for the future and now we are desperate and all of our dreams are shattered,” the Afghan woman said.
A shattered dream to take on their biggest challenge yet – get to New Zealand safely.