Friday, September 17, 2021

Biden administration details plan to move Afghan refugees across the country

In a special briefing on Tuesday, the Biden administration detailed its plans and efforts to relocate and settle Afghan refugees across the country in the near future.

The teleconference was organized by the State Department spokesperson’s office.

A senior official said, “The State Department works with nine resettlement agencies and their network of more than 200 local partners across the country to help Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) recipients through the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program and Reception and Placement Services. to be resettled.” Briefing.

Non-SIV holders, such as SIV applicants and other vulnerable Afghans who have entered as parole, are transferred to one of eight domestic military installations for additional immigration processing and medical screening, before They should be rehabilitated, the official continued.

“Afghans granted parole will receive assistance funded by the Afghan Placement and Assistance Program, through the APA, through these rehabilitation agencies. will be placed in communities across the country,” the official said.

The State Department reported that more than 124,000 individuals had been evacuated from Afghanistan, including 6,000 US citizens.

On September 3, DHS Secretary Alejandro Meyerkas said about 40,000 people had arrived in the United States, about 20 percent of them US citizens or permanent residents.

Tens of thousands of Afghan refugees are still being processed in overseas bases such as the Gulf region and Europe. It is unclear how many more will come to the United States in the coming months.

During Tuesday’s teleconference, a senior official said the “core principle” of the settlement program is family integration.

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“As with traditional refugee and SIV resettlement, the appointment of individuals will prioritize reunification with US-based family and friends and consider the needs and characteristics of each case,” the official said.

Other factors in determining where Afghans will be relocated include reasonable housing, job opportunities and community capacity, the official said.

An Afghan woman and her month old son are seen outside the new temporary camp for migrants and refugees on the island of Lesbos
An Afghan woman and her month old son are seen outside the new temporary camp for migrants and refugees on the Greek island of Lesbos on September 21, 2020. (Yara Nardi/Reuters)

Between October 2001 and August 2021, more than 97,000 Afghan refugees and SIV recipients have settled in the United States, US News reported, citing State Department data.

According to statistics, more than 80 percent of Afghan refugees and SIV recipients were resettled in 10 states since 2001. The 10 states are California, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Maryland, New York, Georgia, Arizona, Colorado and Missouri. California alone admitted 31,695 Afghan refugees, about a third of the total.

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During the teleconference, officials said HHS would provide vaccines, “short-term emergency health insurance,” and “time-limited cash and medical assistance” to refugees and all other eligible populations, among other services.

The official said HHS has requested additional funding to support these new arrivals from Afghanistan.

In August, President Joe Biden authorized an additional $500 million to relocate Afghan refugees, including SIV applicants.

Last week, the Biden administration requested Congress to provide $6.4 billion in fiscal year 2022 to support the processing of Afghan refugees, provide resources for new and future Afghan arrivals, and other humanitarian needs.

Lee Hai

Lee High is a New York-based reporter for The Epoch Times.

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This News Originally From – The Epoch Times

Biden administration details plan to move Afghan refugees across the country
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