“Afghan girl” from the National Geographic front page evacuated to Italy

Sharbat Gula, who became internationally known as the “Afghan girl” after appearing on a cover of National Geographic in 1985, has arrived in Rome, the office of Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi. said Thursday.

Driver news: Gula, who was pictured in National Geographic when she was 12 years old, was evacuated after appealing for help to leave the country after Taliban takeover in August, said Draghi’s office.

American photographer Steve McCurry poses next to his picture, “Afghan Girl”, at an exhibition in Hamburg, Germany in 2013. Photo: Ulrich Perrey / AFP via Getty Images
  • Steve McCurry took Gula’s photo in a refugee camp on the Pakistan-Afghan border, but her identity was not known until the American photographer traveled back to the region in 2002 to track her down, according to national geography.

What they say: Gula’s photograph came to “symbolize the upheavals and conflict in the chapter of history that Afghanistan and its people were going through at the time,” Draghi’s office said in a statement.

  • The company organized her evacuation “as part of the broader evacuation program in place for Afghan citizens and the government’s plan for their reception and integration,” it added.

The big picture: Since the Taliban declared victory in Afghanistan, Afghan women and girls have faced an uncertain future, where many fear the total loss of the hard-fought rights to education, employment and other freedoms.


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