A two-month-old baby handed to a US soldier at the gates of Kabul airport amid the hasty evacuation in August is still missing. Many Afghans had done the same and were later reunited with their children.
Mirza Ali had worked as a security guard at the US embassy for ten years. He was waiting with his wife Suraya and their five children in the chaotic crowd outside Kabul Airport when the Taliban took over. Fearing that an infant would get crushed in the rush, he handed Sohail to a US soldier over a tall fence. The couple thought that they would get to the entrance, which was only five metres away, soon. However, when they got into the airport after 30 minutes, Sohail was nowhere to be found, reported Reuters.
A video of another parent handing a baby to a US soldier during the evacuation had gone viral on social media. The baby was reunited with the parents soon after.
Ali said that a military commander had helped search the airport for Sohail. Civilian officials said that the baby might have been evacuated by himself because children are often moved to another area in the airport.
The couple and their four children aged 17, 9, 6, and 3 were evacuated together. The family is now at Fort Bliss in Texas with other refugees.
Mirza Ali told Reuters that he has been seeking help from aid workers and US officials to find Sohail. "Everyone promises they will do their best, but they are just promises."
A support group has been circulating a photo of Sohail with a 'missing baby' sign. A US official informed that they have flagged the issue for all the agencies involved. A State Department spokesperson said the government is working with international partners and the international community and has issued an amber alert.