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Malala Yousafzai speaks during Graduate Together: America Honors the High School Class of 2020 on May 16, 2020. Photo: Getty Images/Getty Images for EIF & XQ

Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai told BBC on Monday that countries need to open their borders to Afghan refugees following the fall of the Afghan government to the Taliban.

Driving the news: The Taliban took control of Kabul on Sunday night and chaos erupted at the city's international airport, where the U.S. is trying to evacuate thousands of Afghans who aided the military during the 20-year war.

The big picture: Yousafzai, who was shot by a Taliban gunman for advocating for girls' education in 2012, said the future of Afghan child refugees isn't lost.

  • Yousafzai said she sent a letter to Prime Minister Imran Khan asking him to allow refugees, but also ensure that the refugee children and girls have access to education, safety and protection.

What she's saying: "We cannot see a country going decades and centuries back," Yousafzai said. "We have to take some bold stances for the protection of women and girls, for the protection of minority groups and for peace and stability in that region."

  • "I think every country has a role and responsibility right now. Countries need to open their borders to Afghan refugees, to the displaced people," she added. "Their futures are not lost, they can enroll in local schools. "
  • "It is important, not just for peace in Afghanistan but for peace globally."
A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

Go deeper

U.S. will now allow private citizens to sponsor Afghan refugees

A family boards a bus at the airport that will take them to a refugee processing center after being evacuated from Kabul. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Americans wanting to help vulnerable Afghan refugees now have a new way to get involved through a new U.S. private refugee sponsorship program announced Monday.

  • Groups of at least five adults can apply, complete background checks and start fundraising the $2,275 per refugee required.

Why it matters: It’s a big shift in the U.S. refugee process, which has long relied on nonprofits.

Thousands without power as "hazardous" winter storm lashes East Coast

Winter view from Charlotte as winter storm Izzy creates dangerous conditions in Charlotte, N.C. on Jan. 16. Photo: Peter Zay/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

A major winter storm was lashing much of the East Coast on Sunday, causing widespread power outages and disrupting travel over the holiday weekend.

The big picture: Heavy snow and ice accumulations are "likely to produce hazardous travel," downed trees and more power outages from the Mid-South to the Northeast, per the National Weather Service. Some parts of the U.S. can expect to see up to a foot of snow through Monday.

Updated 3 hours ago - Science

Volcanic eruption in Tonga caused "significant" damage

This satellite image of the eruption on Jan. 15 taken by Himawari-8, a Japanese weather satellite operated by Japan Meteorological Agency and released by National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT). Photo: NICT via AP

Significant damage has been reported in Tonga following an undersea volcanic eruption on Saturday, which covered the Pacific nation in ash and cut off communication lines.

Driving the news: The eruption triggered tsunami warnings across Tonga's islands and in other regions, including the West Coast of the U.S. and New Zealand.

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