‘We have new hope’: Six months after the fall of Kabul, Afghans seek a fresh start in exile

People who fled Afghanistan after the Taliban seized power have faced uncertainty over their future abroad. Holly Bancroft hears how some are building a new life, while others are stuck in asylum limbo

Tuesday 15 February 2022 17:03
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<p>File photo: A dinner is hosted for Afghan refugees after they were evacuated from Kabul, on 7 September 2021, in Paris</p>

File photo: A dinner is hosted for Afghan refugees after they were evacuated from Kabul, on 7 September 2021, in Paris

Before boarding a flight last week to Auckland, Afghan photographer Massoud Hossaini finally allowed himself to envisage a future on his own terms.

The Pulitzer Prize winner caught the last commercial flight out of Kabul last August after spending months on the front lines capturing the Taliban’s advance, and ended up in the Netherlands on a temporary visa while he considered his options and the prospect of applying for asylum.

For the past six months, he had been stuck in limbo in the Netherlands, unable to work, freely travel, or find a place of his own. Then New Zealand offered him hope in the form of a visa.

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