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Afghan Man Says The Taliban Targeted Him Because His Uncle Worked For The U.S.


We're going to hear now from one of the many Afghans trying to flee. Now, we're not using his real name to protect his identity. Instead, we're calling him Amini (ph). He's 33 years old and is currently hiding with his 2-year-old twins, his wife and also his four younger sisters. Amini says he's being targeted by the Taliban because his uncle was an interpreter for U.S. intelligence. His uncle was evacuated, and Amini and his family are still desperately trying to find a way out. Now, they thought they had found one last Thursday when they managed to get through Taliban checkpoints and made it to the airport. Amini told our co-host Rachel Martin that he was close to the security wall at the Abbey Gate when the attack happened.

AMINI: The bombing was shocking. I can't even describe. There is no words to describe about the danger and the scene and a terrifying moment of the explosion. Everybody was running in every possible direction. There was blood everywhere, human bodies everywhere. My sisters, they become silent. They become silent and just look at me and did - do not do anything. I realized that they're in fear. I told them to run. They were just shocked about the explosion that they saw. When we come home, they don't eat. They don't sleep. I just want to tell you that last night when I was sleep, my wife said that you shout a big shout.

RACHEL MARTIN, BYLINE: You shouted. You shouted in your sleep.

AMINI: Yes. And she said that you waked up our daughters while you're doing like this. I just said that I don't know.

MARTIN: Yeah. You have your wife with you, your twin baby girls and four younger sisters.

AMINI: Yes ma'am.

MARTIN: Obviously, life under the Taliban for women is extremely hard. Can you tell me about your concerns?

AMINI: Ma'am, I'm just a man between them, between seven girl that are - live in Kabul. I hide them from Taliban. I don't know what to do. I do not even have an idea to what will be my future and what will be my sisters' and wife future. I don't know.

MARTIN: At least one of your sisters was a teacher - right? - and another a student.

AMINI: Yes, ma'am. They are in - my sisters were in universities. One was in first semester, another in the second years of the university.

MARTIN: They haven't been out of the apartment or the home, wherever you're staying.

AMINI: They haven't been to universities, school. Even, they haven't go to job. My older sister is a teacher. And even they scared to go out for just shopping. We are all well-known people among the area, and they know that we just support American troops. My uncle is used to work with the foreigners.

MARTIN: I'm sure your wife and your younger sisters are trying to be as brave as they can.

AMINI: I'm just concerned of their future. Last night, my wife was crying. She said, before the fall of government, she had lots of dreams. She said, I want to work and serve the people. But last night, she said - she was asking me, I can go to university? I just look at her, and nothing was my answer.

MARTIN: The Taliban has said that they will allow safe passage out of the country for Afghans who have proper permissions to travel abroad. What is your plan at this point?

AMINI: Remember, 20 years ago, the Taliban came to Afghanistan. They're just saying different words. But the actions all (ph) just the same, exactly the same.

MARTIN: You don't believe them.

AMINI: Ma'am, I just don't believe them because I was - a week before, I was just beaten because I just wear jeans and shirt. He says, why you are wearing this clothes? I said sorry. And he said, don't wear this again; wear traditional clothes. They're not changed - exactly the same 20 years ago - exactly the same.

MARTIN: Amini, thank you for talking with us. Thank you for sharing your story. And...

AMINI: Thank you, ma'am.

MARTIN: And we wish you well.

AMINI: Thank you, ma'am.

(SOUNDBITE OF MARC RIBOT'S "SOLARIS") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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