Football

Afghan women footballers evacuated by Australian government after appeal

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Following an appeal by football world bodies Fifa and Fifpro, the Australian government has evacuated more than 50 women footballers and athletes and their dependents from Afghanistan.

Following the recapture of Kabul by the Taliban, many Afghan sportswomen went into hiding.

A statement by the international footballers’ federation Fifpro expressed gratitude to Australia.

“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.

“We urge the international community to make sure that they receive all the help they need. There are also many athletes still at risk in Afghanistan and every effort should be made to offer them support.”

Afghanistan’s former football captain Khalida Popal described the evacuation of the group, which included members of the Afghanistan national women’s football team and their youth team, as “an important victory”.

However, she cautioned that more work was still needed in saving others.

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