“I had no more hope”: a former NATO contractor forced to cross the Afghan border
“I had a laissez-passer letter sent by NATO and I had to board an evacuation flight on August 26th. I was in the line of cars on the way to the airport when explosions hit the door of the abbey.
When the Taliban took control of Afghanistan last summer, Moheeb had worked for two years on security projects for NATO at a private company based in Kabul.
Some of the contractors had to be evacuated. However, the bombings carried out by the ISK, an Afghan branch of the Islamic State group, on August 26 left many like him in limbo.
“I didn’t know if I should have felt relieved not to be at the airport to be evacuated. I was completely zoned out. I was 30 minutes from crossing the Taliban checkpoint and then there was total chaos outside the airport,” he recalls.
Moheeb was to be evacuated to Qatar and then await instructions from NATO representatives to see which country would agree to sponsor him. Some of his colleagues who came out earlier were taken to the United States, Canada and Belgium.
“I had to take a step back and desperately tried to contact my contacts at NATO,” he explains. “After months of waiting for an answer, I decided to cross the border from Torkhum to Pakistan. It was one of the hardest decisions I had to make,” he adds.
Moheeb has been unable to obtain travel documents for his family since the former Afghan administration offices were closed after the Taliban took over.