This is the moment a boy who was separated from his parents during the chaotic fall of Afghanistan five months ago is reunited with his loved ones.
Sohail Ahmadi was just two months old when he disappeared on August 19 as thousands of people flocked to leave the country during autumn in Kabul.
According to a Reuters story published in November with an image of the boy, the baby was placed in Kabul after a 29-year-old taxi driver Hamid Safi found the boy at the airport and brought him home to raise.
But after more than seven weeks of negotiations and begging, and eventually being detained by Taliban police, Safi yesterday finally handed over baby Sohail to his grandfather and other relatives still in Kabul.
They said they would now find a way for him to reunite with his mother Suraya and father Mirza Ali Ahmadi, who evacuated a few months ago to the United States.
The fleeing parents feared their son would be crushed in the crowd as they approached the airport gates en route to the United States.
In desperation that day, Mirza delivered Sohail over the airport wall to a uniformed soldier who he believed to be American, who fully expected him to make it past 5 meters 15 feet soon. left to the entrance to get him back.
At that moment, the Taliban pushed back the crowd and it took another half an hour for Ahmadi, his wife and their four other children to get inside.
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But then the baby was nowhere to be found.
Ahmadi said he was desperately searching for his son inside the airport and was informed by officials that he might have been taken out of the country separately and could be reunited with them later.
The rest of the family was evacuated – eventually ending up at a military base in Texas. For months, they didn’t know where their son was.
The case highlights the plight of many parents separated from their children in an attempt to hastily evacuate and withdraw American troops from the country after a 20-year war.
The same day that Ahmadi and his family were separated since he was a baby, Safi slipped through the gates of Kabul airport after picking up his brother’s family, who were also about to be evacuated.
Safi said he saw Sohail alone and crying on the ground.
After he said he had unsuccessfully tried to find the parents of the baby inside, he decided to take the child home to his wife and child.
Safi has three daughters of his own and said his mother’s biggest wish before her death was for him to have a son.
He calls the baby Mohammad Abed and posts pictures of them all together on his Facebook page.
After the Reuters story about the missing child came out, some of Safi’s neighbors – who had recognized him returning from the airport a few months earlier with a child – recognized the photos and Post a comment on his whereabouts on a translated version of the article.
Ahmadi asked relatives still in Afghanistan, including his father-in-law Mohammad Qasem Razawi, 67, who lives in the northeastern province of Badakhshan, to search for Safi and ask him to bring Sohail back to his family.
VERY FOLLOWED TO DOWN
Razawi said he traveled for two days and two nights to the capital to bring gifts – including a slaughtered sheep, several pounds of walnuts and clothes – for Safi and his family.
But Safi refused to release Sohail, insisting he also wanted to be evacuated with his family from Afghanistan.
Razawi then contacted local Taliban police to report a kidnapping.
Safi told Reuters he denied the charges to police and said he was taking care of the baby, not kidnapping it.
The lawsuit was investigated and dismissed and the local police chief told Reuters he helped arrange a settlement, which included an agreement signed by both parties.
Razawi said the baby’s family eventually agreed to compensate Safi about 100,000 Afghans (£700) for the costs of caring for him for five months.
In the presence of the police, and amid many tears, the baby was finally returned to relatives.
https://www.thesun.ie/news/8179865/moment-baby-boy-handed-soldier-afghanistan-airport-chaos/ The moment the boy who was given to a soldier during the chaos at the Afghan airport is finally reunited with his family after 5 months of separation