“My crystal ball has an update on the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan,” announced Verum, “The Taliban is a group with extreme views about the society that ruled Afghanistan from 1996 to 2001. In 2001, the United States (US) invaded Afghanistan. It mostly kept the Taliban at bay for nearly 20 years. But in 2021, US President Joe Biden started the process of withdrawing US troops from the war-torn country.”

“And then the Taliban took over the country within weeks,” said Orak, “What’s the update?”

“It’s more of a problem. With the Taliban back in power, the lives of many Afghans are in danger,” said Verum, “Some of them helped the US troops, some of them lived a life that wouldn’t fit in with the Taliban’s ultra-conservative views. So, these people are desperately trying to flee their country.”

She added, “As of now, Kabul Airport is controlled by the US troops. The worried Afghans have thronged the airport looking for a way out of the country.”

“What an unfortunate situation,” said Scorch, “But I think it’s also a question of where they will go.”

“You’re right, Scorch,” said Verum, “Various countries have announced that they will allow entry to a certain number of Afghan refugees. For instance, the US will accept Afghans who have previously worked with the government. Germany will accept 10,000 refugees. The United Kingdom and Canada will each accept 20,000 refugees while neighbor Tajikistan will accept one lakh refugees.”

She added, “India will accept Afghan refugees belonging to minorities like Hindus and Sikhs. For this, it introduced a new category of e-visa which is valid for 6 months. Iran, too, has set up tents for the refugees in its three border provinces.”

“What about the countries who aren’t accepting refugees?” said Orak.

“In the past 20 years, Pakistan has allowed the maximum number of Afghan refugees. But this time, it is planning to seal the borders. As of now though, refugees have been allowed to enter the country,” said Verum, “Russia, France, Turkey have declined to allow refugees.”

“But even then there will be many, many more Afghans who will be left behind,” said Orak, “And they will have to face the dark times that lie ahead.”