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First Group Of LGBT Afghans Arrives In Britain To Resettle After Taliban Takeover

A Taliban militant tries to stop a woman from protesting at a march in Kabul on October 21.

More than two dozen LGBT Afghans have arrived in Britain after interventions by Foreign Minister Liz Truss and gay rights organizations to get them out of Afghanistan since the Taliban seized power.

The arrival of the 29 Afghans is "hoped to be the first of many" in the coming months, Britain's Foreign Ministry said in a statement on October 30.

"We played a key role getting these people out and will continue to do all we can to help at-risk Afghans leave the country," Truss said in the statement.

Among the group are students and activists who have repeatedly stood up for equality for the LGBT community in Afghanistan.

Under Taliban rule, LGBT people are among the most vulnerable groups in Afghanistan. Many face increased levels of persecution, discrimination, and assault, the statement said.

The group will be supported by Stonewall, Micro Rainbow, and other LGBT charities to set up their new lives in Britain.

Safe houses are being established for the Afghans, said Sebastian Rocca, chief executive of Micro Rainbow. The organization will also help them access counseling, health care, and jobs, Rocca said.

Stonewall and the Canadian organization Rainbow Railroad were part of the effort to get the group to Britain, the Foreign Ministry said.

With reporting by Reuters
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