Members of the female football team in Afghanistan who were evacuated to the United Kingdom due to the Taliban's strict rules against women in the war-torn country are slamming a BBC article which is said to be "endangering" their lives.
Thirty five women were flown from Pakistan to the UK in November 2021 as the female footballers were perceived to be at risk from the Taliban.
There were concerns that they might face consequences for taking part in a sport that the new regime considered to be contrary to Islamic principles.
They were granted visas by the Home Office, but the investigation by BBC Newsnight said that a number of the women were not “top-tier players” as it was claimed.
"It's been two days since this article I don't feel like getting out of bed and facing questions at school or around. We have been through alot this is not fair to us. Shame on you BBC," tweeted Sosan Mohammadi, a member of the team.
The team’s former male coach, now living in Italy, was quoted as saying: "I have seen people in the list who have not even worn a football strip in Herat."
'Shocking' BBC article putting players in trauma
But some of the players involved have come out in force to condemn the “shocking” article, saying it has impacted their mental health and potentially endangered the lives of their families’ back in Afghanistan.
“The trauma we had from Afghanistan. Those deep dark days that we had. The mental health issues we had with the Taliban. We came through bullets, blood and explosive attacks.
“We’re just trying to forget about those days and trying to play football, study and get rid of those bad memories.
"But everytime there is some kind of attack from the media. They are violating my teammates, our team,” added 20-year-old Narges Mayeli, who is member of the Afghan women’s development team living in Doncaster.
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