Afghan Youth Soccer Player Zaki Anwari Dies After Falling From U.S. Military Aircraft

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVAugust 19, 2021

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Zaki Anwari, a member of Afghanistan's youth national soccer team, died after falling from a U.S. military C-17 aircraft Monday. 

"With great regret and sadness, we obtained information that Zaki Anwari, one of the youth footballers of the national team, has lost his life in a horrible incident," Afghanistan's General Directorate of Physical Education and Sports said in a statement, per CNN's Jaide Timm-Garcia.

Anwari was among those trying to leave Afghanistan after the Taliban took control of Kabul over the weekend as United States military forces continued to withdraw from the country. Thousands have attempted to flee the country since the Taliban took control, with civilians clinging to U.S. military aircraft that were sent in to evacuate U.S. citizens and Afghans who worked with them.

Anwari was one of the people who fell from an aircraft Monday, according to the statement. Video of the harrowing scene showed a C-17 aircraft surrounded by hundreds of people on the tarmac, as well as multiple people clinging to the sides of the plane as it took off. 

"They died and were martyred, may his soul rest in peace and his memory be remembered," the statement read.