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Teenager Who Died Falling From US Plane Identified As Afghan National Footballer

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Teenager Who Died Falling From US Plane Identified As Afghan National Footballer

Afghan authorities have confirmed that 19-year-old youth footballer Zaki Anwari has died after falling from a US aircraft leaving Kabul.

Anwari represented Afghanistan at national youth level and was one of many people who desperately tried to flee the region by rushing to Kabul airport following the Taliban's recent takeover.

Thousands of citizens swarmed the airport, doing anything they could to try and get on an airplane taking off down the tarmac.

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Local media reports that at least two people fell to their deaths from the US C-17 military plane, while the US air force confirmed human remains were found in the landing gear of the aircraft.

Afghanistan's General Directorate of Physical Education and Sports wrote in a statement on Facebook: "May he rest in heaven and pray to God for his family, friends and sports colleagues."

Friends, family, football fans and former teammates flocked to social media to pay tribute to Anwari.

In a heartbreaking final Facebook post before his sad passing, Anwari said: "You're the painter of your life. Don't give the paint brush to anyone else."

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The teen wasn't the only casualty of military planes leaving Kabul International Airport earlier this week.

While most people who clambered onto the aircraft as it took off down the runway eventually hopped off, several clung on even after it started reaching for the sky.

Horrifying footage showed at least two people fall to their deaths.

A family has told Vice World News that they believe the person seen falling from the C-17 in the viral footage was their 17-year-old son. Their other son, who is just 16, is also missing.

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A relative said: "We are really upset that we've lost two... we've found the body of one of them, but the other one is still missing.

"Everyone is trying to run away. It is in fear of the Taliban, they are killing people. They have all left to go the airport... they want to go abroad."

The relative explained how the teenager heard a rumour that Canada and the United States would be accepting 20,000 refugees.

The 17-year-old leapt at the chance of being one of the first people to be admitted under the rumoured scheme and 'without telling anyone in the house, he took his personal ID, and left to the airport'.

Featured Image Credit: Afghan Soccer Federation

Topics: News, afghanistan, taliban

Stewart Perrie
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