Camp Bondsteel, a U.S. army base within the Balkan nation of Kosovo, will briefly home Afghan refugees who do not go the preliminary spherical of vetting, senior U.S. officials instructed Fox News.
Several Afghan refugees have already been despatched to Kosovo, the officials mentioned, however it’s unclear what are the subsequent steps to be taken with the people who failed the preliminary safety screening, together with whether or not they are going to be despatched again to Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.
26 REPUBLICAN SENATORS ASK BIDEN FOR INFO ON VETTING OF AFGHANISTAN EVACUEES, AMERICANS LEFT BEHIND
A U.S. official instructed the Associated Press on Saturday that the refugees will endure additional screening and processing with the intention of resettlement within the United States. Kosovo, an ardent U.S. ally, has agreed to host the refugees for up to a yr.
“The course of by which Afghans apply for particular immigrant visas or refugee standing within the U.S. is complicated, and a few candidates are nonetheless within the strategy of acquiring wanted paperwork and offering all the knowledge required to qualify beneath U.S legislation for speedy entry,” the U.S. Embassy in Kosovo mentioned in a press release Saturday.
“Some media experiences have left readers with the inaccurate impression that the United States intends to switch to Kosovo people whom U.S. authorities have deemed inadmissible to the United States. This is just not the case,” the embassy mentioned.
“The settlement between the United States and Kosovo permits the United States to briefly host at Camp Bondsteel, a restricted variety of Afghan residents whose purposes require further processing. This might contain such duties as clarifying candidates’ identification, employment historical past, or different ties to the United States.”
Most Afghan evacuees are finishing the clearing course of in a matter of days at giant transit websites in Qatar, Germany and Italy after which flown by Philadelphia or Washington Dulles airports for resettling within the U.S., the AP reported.
But a small variety of refugees with out any obvious eligibility for U.S. relocation as at-risk Afghans who have been in a position to make it on planes in the course of the chaotic U.S. army evacuation at Kabul airport between Aug. 15 and Aug. 31 would require additional investigation at these transit websites, the AP mentioned.
The State Department had beforehand refused to make clear what occurs to Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) candidates evacuated from Afghanistan who fail the “rigorous” vetting course of.
“Before anybody who’s evacuated from Afghanistan comes to this nation, they endure a rigorous vet,” State Department spokesperson Ned Price instructed reporters on Thursday. “Unless and till they full that vet they won’t be able to come to the U.S.”
But when pressed by reporters as to what occurs to those that don’t go the vetting course of, the State Department spokesman mentioned on the time that he wouldn’t “element publicly” what occurs in these conditions.
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U.S. officials say they’re additionally monitoring the involvement of Pakistan in crushing the army resistance to the Taliban within the Panjshir Valley, the place the final remnants of former Afghan fighters, all of them U.S.-trained, tried to launch a resistance to the Taliban.
According to well-placed CENTCOM sources, the Pakistani army staged an incursion into the Panjshir and is coordinating with the Taliban, utilizing Pakistani Special Forces and drone strikes to take the primary street into the Valley.
Caitlin McFall contributed reporting.