written By: Tabasum Nasiry
Zarghona Nouri, a Taekwondo athlete in the 49-kilogram weight category from Afghanistan, won a bronze medal after securing two victories in the Asian Games, and she dedicated her medal to the earthquake victims in Herat.
On Friday, she won a bronze medal by defeating opponents from Pakistan and Indonesia in Taekwondo. She shared that she started her Taekwondo journey thirteen years ago with a coach from South Korea and has since competed in many international and world-level tournaments.
Zarghona emphasizes that, like many other girls in Afghanistan, she is striving for her goals in the face of inequalities and injustices, even in the foreign land of migration. She believes that being an immigrant in a foreign country brings a sense of “statelessness” and displacement, and it is only through the freedoms available there that she can pursue her dreams.
Zarghona says that she feels anxious all the time due to the rising deportations of Afghan migrants from Pakistan. She also mentions that Afghan migrants face less welcoming conditions compared to migrants from other countries.
This Taekwondo athlete, who considers the future of Afghanistan and its girls as “uncertain and unknown,” urges other girls not to give up on their goals, to fight against all odds and inequalities, and to be a source of pride for Afghanistan. She dedicated her medal from these competitions to the earthquake victims in Herat. She aspired to participate in the World Championships and raise the Afghan tricolour flag with a gold medal.
She acknowledges that no Afghan girl can compete internationally now, but with determination, she wants to represent Afghanistan in international competitions.
It’s worth noting that in the Asian Games Taekwondo competition, 315 Taekwondo athletes from 23 countries participated. Despite limitations, Afghan sportswomen have secured various medals in various competitions. Earlier, Shafiqiqa Mohammadi, from Afghanistan, also won a bronze medal in the World Martial Arts Championships.