DULLES, VIRGINIA - AUGUST 31: Refugees board a bus at Dulles International Airport that will take them to a refugee processing center after being evacuated from Kabul following the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan on August 31, 2021 in Dulles, Virginia. The Department of Defense announced yesterday that the U.S. military had completed its withdrawal from Afghanistan, ending 20 years of war. (Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

Some Afghan Refugees who fled Kabul have found a new home in Cornelius, NC. Salim Hashimi worked with the Army as an interpreter for three years. He had previously applied for a Visa but was contacted by the US Embassy in Kabul in August telling him that he and his family needed to leave Afghanistan. They were given a date to evacuate just a few days later, August 15th at 1:00 pm. And that exact day the Kabul airport fell to the Taliban as Hashemi and his family were on the plane waiting to depart the county.

Hashemi told Fox 46 they could hear the gunfire from onboard the aircraft.

“The sound of gunfire could be heard around the airport. Our plane was not allowed to fly for another four hours,” said Hashemi. “We were scared that the Taliban was going to come inside and dismount us from the airplane and maybe punish me or my family.”

Hashemi knows he and his family are the lucky ones. They still have family, friends, and former co-workers in Afghanistan and they fear for their safety. The Afghan refugees, after arriving in Cornelius were assigned a sponsor family and received donations of furniture and other necessary household items. The kids are in school and doing well as they learn English, make friends, and adjust to their new life. Hashemi told Fox 46 they feel the support of their new community. Though they would like to return to their former home to visit once the situation improves.


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