Tassala Attai’s cousin, an Edmontonian, texts her as much as he can, anxious to get out of Afghanistan. “Every day, I get texts from him wondering if anything has changed or if there’s a chance for him to come to Canada,” she added. “It’s aggravating because these folks are actively looking for answers. They’ve completed their paperwork. Whatever it is, they have it. It’s a pity that they won’t be able to continue forward.”
On Saturday, Attai assisted in organizing a rally to raise awareness about her cousin’s and other loved ones’ situation in Afghanistan as the Taliban takes power. Hundreds of people gathered on the grounds of the Alberta Legislature to demonstrate their support for the Afghan people and to pressure the Canadian government to do more to help. In downtown Calgary, more than 100 people gathered.
“It was my calling as someone seeking a means to make a difference,” Attai remarked. “So I simply walked in, trying to be a part of it, doing the best I could for the people back home, to be honest. They don’t have voices, so we must act as their voice for the time being.”
Crystal Hakimi spoke at the rally beside Attai. Both urge people to exert pressure on the federal government to assist in the immigration of more Afghans to Canada.
“A proper plan is required,” Hakimi stated. “They said they’d bring in 20,000, but they’ve only brought in 2,000.” We have no idea what’s going on; we’re just hearing stuff.
“We’re all quite dissatisfied with the situation in Afghanistan. The lives of those who are left behind are meaningless. And it’s awful as a Canadian here, with all of our freedoms, to witness what’s happening on with our brothers and sisters over there.”
After assisting in the evacuation of over 3,700 people from Kabul, Canada’s mission to airlift civilians leaving Afghanistan came to an end on Thursday. While the federal government acknowledges that there are still Canadian citizens, permanent residents, and their families in the nation, no more evacuation flights are planned at this time.