'They are not safe': Local man fears family's safety in Afghanistan

Posted at 5:26 PM, Aug 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-20 19:59:04-04

BOISE, Idaho — People right here in the Treasure Valley are feeling the effects of what's happening in Afghanistan. One Boise man says his family is right in the middle of it and he's looking for the community help to bring them back to safety in America.

Shafiullah Karimi has lived in Boise for about 8 years after growing up in Afghanistan. He said whiles he’s safe here in the U.S., his family back home is not.

“My brother called me late, at midnight, and said things are not good here. My dad is really worried. My mom as well. (The Taliban) are looking for people who served the government, who served the American army,” Karimi said. “The only way that could help me get out of this situation is taking out my family from there. Not to let them be killed because of what I did, because I served the army here.”

Years ago, Karimi served in the United States Army as a linguist, and because of his work helping the United States, his family is suffering.

Related: Biden commits to getting all Americans out of Afghanistan

Shafiullah Karimi

“My neighbor, they told the Taliban. They showed my family that they are my brothers,” Karimi said. “Let’s kill them instead of their brother is he’s not here. My brother saw people chasing him. Random people chasing him.”

Karimi is not alone. He says many other families in the Treasure Valley and across the country are in the same spot of constantly worrying about their loved ones from miles away.

“They’re all struggling. We’ve been calling each other trying to figure out a way to get our family out of there,” Karmi said.

Nicole: “Can you describe what it looks like for them there?”

Karimi: “It has been a couple of nights that during the night they have a list of their targets that go after, and they try to kill them in their homes.”

Related: Videos, photos from Afghanistan show just how desperate many are to be evacuated

Getting his family out is a complicated process. They need a visa which seems nearly impossible, but he's asking for the community's help in calling on local and state officials and explaining the danger his family is in because of his service to the United States.

Shafiullah Karimi

“What I want from the community here, is if they can just stand up with me and get my why’s to President Joe Biden or to Governor Brad Little,” Karimi said.

He and other friends also hope the community will reach out to state officials, such as Senator Jim Risch or Senator Mike Crapo.

“I've got to take my family out of there, but there are many more families,” Karimi said. “How long is it going to be that bad? We will still suffer until we get our family out of there.”