Afghan student awaits word on family in Kabul

Banfield

CHICAGO (NewsNation Now) — An Afghan student in Chicago has been waiting days to hear from his family who have been trying to get out of Afghanistan.

“After three or four nights of being at the airport, you know, being in the crowd, shoving and pushing through the crowd and trying to get the military attention, I get a voice message from my mom at 4 a.m., I think last Thursday, ” Kaihan said on “Banfield” on Monday night. “And she said that she was next to a plane, they made it through the crowd and they’re boarding. But I haven’t heard from them since.”

Kaihan has been a student in the United States for four years. He says his father translated for the International Red Cross during the Taliban regime and his mother was an English teacher.

“According to protocol, they should be in Germany right now,” Kaihan said.

On Thursday, a massive Islamic State suicide bombing outside airport gates killed scores of Afghans and 13 U.S. troops.

“It was four or five hours later, after I got the voice message,” Kaihan said. “I hear about the explosions. And I get chills all over my body. And I try and contact them but I can’t contact them. I still haven’t been able to to this day, but I just think they’re out. Otherwise, I would have heard something.”

On Monday, the last plane carrying troops and evacuees exited Afghanistan’s air space, ending America’s longest war.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken says fewer than 200 Americans remain in Afghanistan who want to leave and the U.S. will continue to try getting them out.

“I don’t know what other avenues they have to pursue to get out of Kabul, but their lives are in danger or in threat,” Kaihan said.

Blinken said the number of Americans left may be closer to 100. He said the U.S. would work with Afghanistan’s neighbors to secure their departure either overland or by charter flight once the Kabul airport reopens. The Taliban now hold full control of the airport.

“I think what they say right now is because the world has their eyes on them,” Kaihan said. “I think after the cameras are gone, we will see history repeating what it was 20 years ago.”

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The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.

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