Afghan ‘girl with the green eyes’ gets asylum in Italy

It was a photo that made a worldwide impression: the 1985 National Geographic cover portrait of an Afghan girl with a penetrating gaze, her bright green eyes filled with a mixture of combativeness and fear. Photographer Steven McCurry shot the picture in a refugee camp on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border and didn’t know who she was at first. It was only in 2002 that he managed to track her down and find out her identity.

Sharbat Gula, as she turned out to be, is now given asylum in Italy. She had asked that country to help her get out of Afghanistan and will have the chance to start a new life, says a statement from Palazzo Chigi, Prime Minister Draghi’s official residence.

Gula has already had more wanderings. In 2014 she turned out to be in Pakistan, but went into hiding there when her arrest was ordered for allegedly having a false ID.

International celebrity

She was eventually able to return to Kabul, where she was welcomed with open arms as an international celebrity by then-President Ghani. She promised her an apartment and a “dignified and safe life in her homeland”, as it was phrased somewhat solemnly.

But apparently she no longer has faith in that after the takeover by the Taliban. Italy says she was brought to the country as part of a wider evacuation program for Afghans.

Afghan ‘girl with the green eyes’ gets asylum in Italy
Source link Afghan ‘girl with the green eyes’ gets asylum in Italy

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