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Officials in talks to evacuate female football stars from Afghanistan following fears over safety, global players’ union confirms

Football officials are currently in negotiations with governments in an attempt to evacuate female players from Afghanistan following the recapturing of power by the Taliban, as confirmed by the world players’ union.

Ever since the group took control of the country, concerns have been widely voiced on the safety of female players who have spoken out against it in the past while demanding women’s rights, with former women’s national team captain Khalida Popal – now living in Denmark – speaking to various outlets on the matter.

“As a champion of activists, we are greatly concerned about those athletes who have, for many years, been outspoken advocates for improved human rights in the country,” said FIFPRO on Twitter.

“Over the past few days, FIFPRO has been liaising with governments to establish an evacuation plan for athletes at risk. Central to this rescue effort is the ambition to bring as many people to safety as possible,” it added.

The tweets came as a continuation of a thread where the union offered its condolences to the family of Zaki Anwari.

A teenage footballer who reportedly died after falling from a US plane at Kabul Airport at the turn of the week, he is one of many Afghanis trying to flee the country after western forces pulled out and effectively handed control to the Taliban 20 years after being toppled.

“FIFA has been shocked and saddened by the tragic death of Zaki Anwari, a former under-17 Afghanistan national youth team player,” said the world’s football governing body separately.

“Our deepest condolences are with Zaki’s family and loved ones.”

“We are supporting them through this difficult time,” it stressed.Branding the situation “unstable and very worrying”, FIFA claimed it has been in contact with Afghanistan’s FA and is receiving regular updates from affected players.

Humira Saqib

Humira Saqib (born 1980) is an Afghan journalist and women's human rights activist. She is one of the leading activists who through her writings in the magazine Negah-e-Zan (A Vision of Women) and in Afghan Women's News Agency, has been protesting against extreme forms of harassment against women in her radically Islamic country. She pleads that the parliament should enact laws for "Elimination of Violence against Women and enforce it vigorously.... Education, is also a key to changing mentalities around women's roles in society."[1][2][3] She is now pursuing her efforts to further women's rights by working for the women's news agency as a writer and editor.[

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