An Afghan student who rushed to Kabul airport to try to escape said ‘I thought at one point that this is the end and I will die’

Thousands of Afghans rush to the Kabul International Airport as they try to flee the Afghan capital of Kabul, Afghanistan, on August 17, 2021. (
Thousands of Afghans rush to the Kabul International Airport as they try to flee the Afghan capital of Kabul, Afghanistan, on August 17, 2021. ( Sayed Khodaiberdi Sadat/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images
  • A 22-year-old Afghan student described the chaos at Kabul’s Hamid Karzi International Airport to CNN.
  • She said crowds of people caused mayhem at the airport as they tried to flee Kabul amid the Taliban takeover.
  • She said she thought she was going to die at the airport.
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A 22-year-old Afghan student who was among throngs of Kabul residents who tried to flee through the city’s airport on Monday amid the Taliban’s takeover says she thought she was going to die during the rush.

Aisha Ahmad told CNN that crowds of people, “including many without passports and little security” caused chaos at Hamid Karzi International Airport on Monday.

“The crowds were pushed by police. Kids and women were on the ground,” she said, adding that it felt like a “doomsday” situation.

“I thought at one point that this is the end and I will die,” she added.

Ahmad said she did not make it out of Kabul on a plane on Monday, and is unclear what she will do next, as she fears she will be unable to finish her university education.

“People are not much outside, and they do not know how their daily activity will be when life is back to normal. Will they force stores to close during prayer time? Will there be punishment for not going to the mosque, will they force people to go? … No one knows,” she told CNN.