‘My heart has broken’; Afghan refugee in Triad fears for family’s safety after Taliban takeover in home country

Piedmont Triad News

(WGHP) — The Taliban takeover of Afghanistan has a refugee in the Piedmont Triad worried for his family living in the embroiled country.

“I was really in a big shock,” said Hamid Sharifi, an Afghan refugee. “Really my heart has broken, my heart is very heavy.”

Sharifi has lived in the United States since 2019. He said his family is in the middle of the chaos and are targets of Taliban forces.

“I cannot sleep for this,” he said. “I’m afraid for not for me, for my family who live in Afghanistan.”

In 2011, he feared for his life while living in Afghanistan. He and his wife escaped the country and eventually came to the United States.

Even though his family is more than 7,000 miles away he still talks to them every day.

“One or two times I call them,” Sharifi said. “Sometimes internet good, sometimes not and they are good right now.”

He said they are sheltering in their home, but he’s afraid for their safety and what may unfold next.

“I don’t have any hope about Taliban,” he said. “That they create rules and peace and anything like that because they just follow one way.”

Sharifi told FOX8 one way is imposing extreme rules on everyone, especially women. He lived there during their rule between 1996 and 2001 before the U.S. intervened. He fears this time it may be worse.

“I don’t have any idea about the future of Afghanistan,” Sharifi said. “My biggest fear is Taliban right now they have learned diplomacy, they can use social media, they are in social media, news media and everything.”

While Sharifi is glued to updates from his family, he said all he can do is pray for their safety.

“What should I say to my family,” he said. “I cannot say something to make them easier, but just only one word just trust and don’t lose your hope.”

Sharifi told FOX8 he’s concerned the Taliban may cut the internet, which would end the only way he can talk with them.

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