An Oklahoma mother has revealed how she saved 10 women from Afghanistan’s robotics team in Kabul.
The militant group’s countrywide takeover with its capture of Kabul has sparked fears for women’s safety all over the world, given the Taliban has historically stoned, amputated and publicly executed women who don’t fall in line with their rules, whether it’s not leaving the house without a man, covering their faces or being used as ‘sex slaves.’
Amid reports of women already being tortured, with one female governor captured by fighters, 10 lives were saved earlier this month by a US mum.
Allyson Reneau, a 60-year old Harvard graduate, travelled to Afghanistan in early August to rescue 10 members of the country’s all-girls robotics team, and hopes to save more soon.
Reneau, who graduated in 2016 with a master’s degree in international relations and US space policy, earlier helped fly the Afghan Girls Robotic Team to Explore Mars’ annual Human to Mars conference in 2019. She ‘immediately connected’ with them, and has maintained contact with them, she told Today.
After feeling ‘helpless’ over the chaos in Afghanistan, she made a ‘Hail Mary’ call to a former roommate at the US Embassy to get the girls out. ‘She wrote up a request, and I got all of their passports together. She went back to the Embassy at midnight and worked all night to prepare the documents [and] packets for the girls,’ Reneau explained.
A week later, she flew into Qatar. ‘It’s [a] very narrow window of opportunity. I knew that if I didn’t run through that door now – it’s now or never. Sometimes you only get one chance,’ she said.
Eventually, the girls made it to the ‘US military side’ of Kabul airport and were flown to a secure location, where they’ll be able to pursue higher education. ‘All the emotion, two weeks of work for them, it hit me all at once,’ Reneau said.
While relieved, Reneau is currently working on getting 25 more girls out of Afghanistan to safety.
If you’d like to help those who’ve been affected by the recent devastating events unfolding in Afghanistan, you can make a donation to the UN Refugee Agency United Kingdom here.
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