National Geographic magazine’s famed green-eyed “Afghan Girl” has arrived in Italy as part of the West’s evacuation of Afghans following the Taliban takeover of the country, according to USA Today.

What’s Happening:

  • The office of Premier Mario Draghi said Italy organized the evacuation of Sharbat Gulla after she asked to be helped to leave the country. The Italian government will now help to get her integrated into life in Italy, according to a statement said.
  • Gulla gained international fame in 1984 as an Afghan refugee girl, after war photographer Steve McCurry’s photograph of her, with piercing green eyes, was published on the cover of National Geographic. McCurry found her again in 2002.
  • Italy was one of several Western countries that airlifted hundreds of Afghans out of the country following the departure of U.S. forces and the Taliban takeover in August.

What They’re Saying:

  • In a statement announcing Gulla’s arrival in Rome, Draghi’s office said her photograph had come to “symbolize the vicissitudes and conflict of the chapter in history that Afghanistan and its people were going through at the time.”
  • It said it had received requests “by those in civil society, and in particular by non-profit organizations working in Afghanistan” backing Gulla’s plea for help to leave the country.
  • Italy organized her travel to Italy “as part of the wider evacuation program in place for Afghan citizens and the government’s plan for their reception and integration.”