April Haywood, 17 and from north Norfolk, is the Member of Youth Parliament (MYP) for North and West Norfolk. Here, she shares her view on the UK evacuating Afghanistan and the need to accept refugees.

A young footballer's life cut short, a baby crying by barbed wire, 600 people stuffed in a plane. These stories of desperation are now synonymous with Kabul international airport. Families camping outside have documents and little else.

North Norfolk News: April Haywood is MYP for West and North Norfolk in the Norfolk Youth Parliament.April Haywood is MYP for West and North Norfolk in the Norfolk Youth Parliament. (Image: April Haywood)

All they can do is wait. Everything built in 20 years is being deconstructed. Afghanistan’s tricolour replaced by white flags.

The Taliban has returned with more power than before. The best, the brightest of Afghanistan are fleeing. At least they are trying to.

Thousands of miles away, Norfolk County Council was one of the first to step up and support the Government’s Afghan Relocation and Assistance Policy (ARAP) which aims to assist 5,000 Afghans who worked with the UK military.

North Norfolk News: A 'refugees welcome' banner outside City Hall in Norwich as part of a protest in response to the Afghanistan crisisA 'refugees welcome' banner outside City Hall in Norwich as part of a protest in response to the Afghanistan crisis (Image: Archant)

Norwich South MP Clive Lewis, who served in Afghanistan, empathised the UK’s responsibility to increase aid for Afghanistan and welcome more Afghan refugees.

But thousands more Afghans are still under threat.

Those who dreamt and worked for a better future: journalists, artists, producers, continued despite death threats from the Taliban, directed especially at women.

Now the group that despises everything these people represent, rule the country again.

North Norfolk News: MPs debating the Afghanistan crisis in the House of Commons.MPs debating the Afghanistan crisis in the House of Commons. (Image: PA Media)

In response, the UK has promised to evacuate 5,000 Afghans who are under high risk of persecution this year, on top of the ARAP scheme.

The Government’s bespoke resettlement scheme prioritises women and minority groups ‘who are most at risk of human rights abuses and dehumanising treatment by the Taliban.’

Like the Hazara community, who have not forgotten the Taliban’s 1998 Hazara massacre in Mazar-I-Sharif.

However, across partisan lines, politicians, organisations and Afghan citizens recognise the UK’s responsibility to Afghanistan goes beyond 5,000 refugees.

Conservative MP and former Brexit secretary David Davies said the UK should accept "north of 50 thousand refugees" due to its "direct moral responsibility".

Charities like Freedom from Torture and Choose Love have highlighted people under immediate risk do not have an indefinite amount of time to flee.

Meanwhile, defence secretary, Ben Wallace told BBC Breakfast ‘every hour counts’.

The UK Government’s scheme to resettle 20 thousand Afghans in the ‘long term’ means little to those dying now at the hands of the Taliban or whilst attempting to flee.

Still, with estimates of 3.5 million people displaced within Afghanistan; 1.5 million and 780 thousand fled to neighbouring Pakistan and Iran, the majority of Afghans are stranded or hosted by already strained neighbouring countries.

Horrific scenes at Kabul international airport show only the minority who are mostly already eligible to seek refuge in NATO countries.

Reading about the 17-year-old football player, Zaki Anwari, who fell to his death trying to flee Afghanistan, I can’t help thinking about my friends, also 17, who support Norwich city.

Thousands of miles and war separate us. The human things, love of football, hope for a better future remain. But for being born in Afghanistan, a life is severed short.