FIRST ON FOX: Senate Republicans are demanding solutions from the Biden administration amid studies that a whole lot of Afghan evacuees are strolling off U.S. army bases with out finishing the resettlement course of.
In a letter to Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, a gaggle of 16 Senate Republicans, led by Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa, argue that the safety vetting procedures to clear Afghan evacuees “remain unclear and incomplete, and, unless changed, are insufficient to preserve the safety of the American homeland.”
DHS: HUNDREDS OF AFGHAN EVACUEES ARE LEAVING MILITARY BASES IN THE US WITHOUT COMPLETING RESETTLEMENT
Many Afghan evacuees delivered to U.S. army bases in the course of the chaotic withdrawal from Afghanistan in August got the short-term standing of “humanitarian parole” after which have been anticipated to acquire resettlement providers to finish their transition into the nation. The senators’ letter demanding extra data follows a report Saturday by Reuters that stated at the least 700 Afghan evacuees left U.S. bases with out receiving these providers.
While immigration specialists instructed Reuters that these people usually are not breaking the regulation and that army officers haven’t any authorized authority to detain law-abiding Afghans, the senators fear some evacuees are slipping by alleged cracks within the vetting course of. They’re asking the administration to briefly halt relocating Afghan evacuees to the U.S. until they’re totally vetted Afghans holding Special Immigration Visas, and to pause resettlement of Afghans already paroled into the U.S. till the Department of Defense Inspector General completes an intensive evaluate of the vetting course of and briefs members of Congress.
“We are concerned the hastily developed process creates gaps in security and criminal vetting and risks our nation’s security,” the letter states. “The vetting process must ensure the security, medical and criminal screening of each Afghan seeking admittance into the United States.”
A DHS spokesperson instructed Fox News that every one Afghan evacuees at U.S. army bases needed to endure the screening course of earlier than arriving within the nation.
“Afghan guests who receive required vaccinations, complete their medical screening, and await their relocation arrangements at safe havens are eligible for various forms of assistance, which is why an overwhelming majority of Afghans remain at safe havens across the country,” the spokesperson stated. “If they choose to leave the military base, they are responsible for completing the medical requirements on their own, may forfeit other benefits, and could be in violation of their parole.
“Before arriving at secure havens, these people underwent a multi-layer screening and vetting course of involving biometric and biographic screenings carried out by intelligence, regulation enforcement, and counterterrorism professionals from the Departments of Homeland Security and Defense, in addition to, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), and extra Intelligence Community (IC) companions earlier than they have been permitted entry into the United States,” the spokesperson continued. “Furthermore, these with pending immigration circumstances are required to keep up contact with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to be able to maintain their pending case in good standing.”
The DHS added that every one arrivals are being examined for COVID-19 and that Afghan nationals are required to be vaccinated in opposition to COVID-19 as a situation of their humanitarian parole.
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