Traffickers offer help to fleeing Afghans
AFGHANISTAN: With the hope of a new life and work, Afghans continue to leave their country, now ruled by the Taliban, in packed cars. They are apparently getting help from human traffickers. The remote town of Zaranj, close to the border of Pakistan and Iran, has become a major hub for the trafficking of willing Afghans.
A report by the BBC showed how desperate Afghan families are fleeing the country — facing a massive humanitarian and economic crisis. They are readily turning up to human traffickers.
The report shows cars having 18-20 people undertaking a seven-hour journey from Zaranj through the desert to Pakistan. Such people are smuggled across Iran.
Traffickers told the BBC that the number of Afghans leaving the country has doubled since the Taliban takeover.
Afghans have chosen this as an easy way out of the country as there is no immigration and need for visas. The traffickers just need to pay a small fee to the Taliban. Most of these people are desperate men who are fleeing the country in the hope of finding employment elsewhere.
Sitting in one of the cars, a woman with a child in her arms said she used to be a teacher under the previous government in Afghanistan. She said, “I have not received my salary for the last two months. I am helpless. What can I give my children to eat?
The town of Zaranj, where it is operating openly, depicts the desperation of Afghans to flee the country. The country’s economy has collapsed and only a few have faith in the Taliban government.
The Taliban are charging a fee of $10 or $11 per truck. They said the deepening economic crisis and freezing of foreign funds is making it impossible to stop people from fleeing.
One Taliban soldier said, “The problem is that Afghanistan’s economy is weak. The international community does not recognise us as a legitimate government.”
Similar scenes were witnessed at the Kabul international airport soon after the Taliban takeover when Afghans thronged the airport and pleaded with authorities to allow them to board evacuation planes to flee the country.
– INDIA TODAY