In the desperate calls and voicemails they send you, Khaleda Bhopal You can hear pain and crying between pleas for help. the Afghan women’s national team players, which Bhopal helped shape, Now they fear for their lives Because the Taliban regained control of the country after two decades.
When they call her Bhopal can only advise them to flee their homes, from neighbors who know they are the pioneers of this sport, and are trying to erase their history in particular His activism against the Talibanthat began to re-establish the principality Afghanistan.
“I encouraged them to remove their social media channels, photos, run and hide. It broke my heart because all these years We have worked to increase the appearance of women And now I tell my women in Afghanistan They hide and disappear. “Their lives are in danger,” Bhopal said. Associated Press.
Bhopal, 34, can barely understand how fast Fall of the Afghan government and feeling abandoned by the Western countries that helped overthrow the Taliban in 2001. After fleeing with her family when the Taliban took control of Kabul in 1996, Bhopal returned to Afghanistan two decades ago As a teenager he lived in a refugee camp in Pakistan. Thanks to the protection of the international community, Bhopal was optimistic that women’s rights would be promoted.
My generation hoped to rebuild the country, and to develop conditions for the country’s next generation of women and men. So I started with other young women, Using football as a tool to empower women and girls“, He said.
By 2007 there were enough players and Bhopal was part of the first Afghan women’s team.