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A plane carrying more than 75 Afghan female soccer players, officials and relatives under threat from the Taliban left Kabul on Tuesday, bound for Australia, the first country to offer a haven in response to pleas from a multinational network of athlete advocates and human-rights lawyers.

With many more imperiled athletes still in Afghanistan, evacuation efforts are continuing around-the-clock, with outreach to multiple countries including the United States.

The political and operational hurdles behind Tuesday’s evacuation were monumental, according to Carter, who likened it to “a digital Dunkirk,” alluding to the evacuation of stranded Allied soldiers from the beaches of northern France during World War II.

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