It was the moment Rohina Wardak and Mohammad had hoped for, but feared would never come to pass while the Taliban controlled Afghanistan.

Yesterday night, the ex-translator for the British military and his spouse stepped off an RAF aircraft to land on English soil. Their excitement was only matched by their relief

‘This is a moment we have prayed for, dreamt of but did not believe could really happen as our hopes had been dashed so many times, our hearts broken and lives shattered,’ Mohammad, 30, said.

‘We have lived so long apart, cruelly and wrongly denied the chance everyone should have to live with their partner that this is an unforgettable, magical moment…we have survived apart and hope we can finally begin a new life together.’

It was the moment that Mohammad and Rohina Wardak had dreamt of but feared would never happen while the Taliban controlled Afghanistan

It was the moment Rohina Wardak and Mohammad Wardak had hoped for but feared would never come true while the Taliban controlled Afghanistan

The couple was on the third mercy flight, which was the largest to date, and brought vulnerable Afghans to the UK via countries bordering their homeland. 

29 Afghans who are LGBT (Lesbians Gay, Bisexual, and Transsexual) were among the 124 passengers. These people have been persecuted under the Taliban.

The flight also included interpreters and Afghans who are eligible to travel to Britain under the Arap and LOTR schemes. 

Security reasons have prevented us from disclosing the exact location of the flight.

The Taliban took over Afghanistan in August. Since then, UK citizens and vulnerable Afghans (including Rohina) have had to travel to neighboring countries, from which they can fly to the UK. 

For Mohammad and his wife of four years, 22, it has been an extraordinary struggle to be together, their case championed by this newspaper’s award-winning Betrayal of the Brave campaign. 

They had feared they would be apart for years more after Rohina had failed to force her way through the crush around Kabul’s airport to board an RAF evacuation flight in August as Western forces pulled out of Afghanistan.

After being told by UK officials that a flight was waiting for them, she struggled four times to get to the airport. Each time she was forced to return. 

Last night, on a damp, grey evening, the former translator for the British military and his wife stepped off an RAF plane on to English soil, their excitement matched only by relief

Last night, a damp, grey evening saw the ex-translator of the British military and the wife step off an RAF plane to arrive on English soil. Their excitement was only matched only by their relief

Twice she was unconscious and was trampled upon by the seething crowds.

She was eventually carried away, and her feet were swollen from the crush. 

‘At that time my wife had to go to hospital and we thought we would not be together for a long, long time and Rohina was beginning to question the marriage itself,’ said Mohammad, who now lives in Newport, South Wales.

Mohammad had been engaged to Rohina when Mohammad, who served four years with the UK troops on the frontlines at Helmand, was transferred to Britain in 2015. 

He was able to marry again two years later. However, due to immigration regulations, she was not able to join him.

If they had been married at the time he was granted refuge, then she would have been able to travel to the UK on her own.

Rohina tried for more than two years for a visa – the processing hampered by the Covid crisis – but to her dismay in April she was refused by the British Embassy in Kabul, one of ten wives of ex-translators in the UK rejected. 

The families took desperate measures to sue the British government for allowing them to join their husbands here. 

The wives, whose cases were highlighted by the Daily Mail, accused the Home Office of endangering their lives and ‘unreasonably’ denying them the right to a family life.

In early August the court ruled in the wives’ favour but by then they faced making it past Taliban checkpoints and then thousands besieging Kabul Airport. 

On one heartbreaking day, one wife made it, but Rohina didn’t.

Mohammad refused the Taliban’s takeover. 

He heard that Afghans, including translators, were crossing into neighboring countries. He decided he couldn’t wait and flew to the Middle East to ask for help from the British High Commission.

A border pass was arranged for Rohina, who held a visa for the UK, and she travelled – but there was more agony as she was initially refused permission to cross. 

‘It was quite awful,’ said Mohammad. ‘We cried. We were 100 metres apart either side of the border.’

Last night as they arrived, they thanked the British diplomats who helped their passage and the Daily Mail’s Betrayal of the Brave campaign.

Mohammad said: ‘We believe this wonderful moment has been made possible with the help of your hard work, you never gave up on interpreters and their wives, you gave us hope when none seemed to be there and you will always be with us.’