It was two decades until the people of Afghanistan were up against their worst nightmares- the return of the Taliban in power. The extremist group has taken control of the country, and one of the worst-affected people under their rule have been the sportspersons of the country.
The Taliban is infamous for their iron-fisted restriction on sports and related activities, and on the heel of their second coming to power, the former captain of the Afghan women’s football team urged her fellow players to delete their social media and other public identities and to also burn their jerseys for safety.
The country has a massive mixed martial arts following and also has its own promotion- the Snow Leopard Fighting Championship. However, the onset of Taliban rule means the fighters now have only two options- to save their careers or their lives.
Even though the extremist group has vocally promised to flourish sports in the country, their past examples already make that hard to believe, and on top of that, the killings of an MMA fighter’s brother and sister also set a gruelling example of the horrors that the Afghan athletes are going through.
The fighter mentioned in this article hails from Kabul and has requested his name to be kept secret feeling reprisal from the Taliban. Speaking exclusively to MMA India, he revealed that he trains young kids, but that too might not last long, even though the Taliban has not spoken anything against that so far.
“I’m currently in Kabul. The problem is here, a younger brother of mine, as well as sister, were murdered. So things are jumbled up in here. So we have to see how things turn out because the problems are too much right now,” the fighter said.
When asked if he is able to continue training the kids, he said that the Taliban has not caused any trouble so far, but that may not be the case in the long run. “They haven’t yet said anything so let’s see how things turn out. But, when they came before, they killed my younger brother and sister in a feud. Things are not good here,” he added.