Afghanistan's LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) community members have urged human rights advocates across the globe to help them as they are terrified at being hunted down by the Taliban, who have taken control of the country.

Rabia Balkhi, a 20-year-old lesbian, and her family went into hiding after the Taliban recaptured Kabul last month. The university student along with hundreds of LGBTQ people in the country are urging international advocates to help them.

Balkhi, whose name has been changed, told CNN via text message from an undisclosed location, "The situation gets worse every day ... fear of arrest is part of life now and I have such stress that I can't even sleep."

Two activists, who are fighting for LGBTQ rights, outside of the country said that they had lists with hundreds of names of individuals who want to leave Afghanistan.

No official statement has been made regarding enforcement of strict religious laws against Afghanistan's LGBTQ citizens, but in July, one Taliban judge said that being crushed under a wall or stoning were the two punishments for homosexuality.

A Taliban spokesman said that when it comes to the LGBTQ people in Afghanistan, they had no official plans yet.

According to the LGBTQ people in Afghanistan, they had heard reports of partners, friends, and members of their community being raped or attacked, and they fear that vigilante groups and Islamic fundamentalists emboldened by the Taliban could do the same to them.

Balkhi said that one gay man in her neighborhood ended up getting raped after being located by the Taliban.

Some LGBTQ people have been hiding in basements and single rooms, constantly checking their phones for any way to escape or are simply staring at the walls. Friends are also helping the community members by bringing them supplies or keeping a watch while some are alone and don't have much food left.

With evacuation flights out of the country now closed, LGBTQ people in Afghanistan feel abandoned by the international community.

Last month, a gay person, Abdul (whose name had been changed) told BBC that the Taliban will never accept gay or LGBTQ people, and will kill all of them on the spot.

Representational image of LGBTQ flag
This is a representational image. Photo by Giorgio Viera/AFP via Getty Images

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