In a hearing by the House Armed Services Committee, veteran Democrat Jason Crowe told the powerful story of an Afghan “Mohammed” who helped the United States. And who the Crow said was assassinated in January after being denied. The special immigrant visa he applied for in 2010.
“Mohammed was driving to work with his 10-year-old son when the Taliban’s car stopped in front of him, the assassin jumped out and shot him in front of his son,” Crowe said. While those assassins shout out, claiming Where are the American forces going to help you? Where are their helicopters? Where are their planes? You have been helping them for ten years, where are they now? ”;
The crow said the man’s son was later exposed to threats from the Taliban.
“He and many others like him will die soon unless we take action,” said the Crow.
Another war veteran, Michael Waltz, said he knew the interpreters that “Was executed along with his family only with the documents he needed to get the SIV visa”
“I can tell you that these people who stood with us were being hunted as we spoke … and I believe that when the last soldier rose, we mainly sentenced them to death.” Waltz said, “We need an evacuation plan and time is important.”
In response to Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for Indo-Pacific Affairs, David Hellvey would say only that the administration. “Work with our inter-agency partners to see tools and resources and mechanisms to support those who support us.”
There have been 18,000 visa applicants.
About 18,000 people have applied for special immigrant visas to the United States, according to the State Department, which are still pending approval, a process that could take years due to a thorough review.
Afghans working for the United States applying for a visa, including interpreters and translators, have described being threatened by the Taliban to aid US forces.
“I think it is very important, of course, the Department of Defense. But the State Department, the entire government, has a move that is on the list of priorities to move forward in an effort to find ways to help the people who have helped us, ”said Adam Smith, the committee’s president of the Democracy.
Republican top representative on the board, Mike Rogers, said he agreed and undermined the administration’s planning status for Afghanistan’s future following the withdrawal of troops.
“What we hear today about the basics when it comes to visas for these people who have helped us train the Afghan forces in the future, we hear that we are talking about visas for these people who have helped us to train the Afghan forces in the future.” ‘We’re working on it,’ ‘Rogers said. “I am of the opinion that this should be fixed before you announce that you will be leaving … Before we can proceed with this withdrawal we need to complete the process and get the issue resolved. These “
The Crow was tested with Helvey after it appeared he was unsure who led the interagency process on special immigrant visas and taking Afghans applying to leave the country.
“We are working with an interagency process to look at options,” said Helvey.
When under pressure on who led the process, Helvey said, “I believe the State Department will take the lead.”
“Do you believe it or you know?” The crow shot back. “And you don’t know for sure?”
“I don’t know for sure depending on what we’re talking about,” Hellvey replied.
“We had several weeks to take this loan, we had no time left, there was the life of … our partners, the people with whom we had obligations, not just moral obligations. But it’s a national security obligation and you don’t have to do anything. I don’t know who is leading the inter-agency, ”the Crow asked fervently.
Hellvey concluded that the State Department is the leader in special immigrant visas. But there is visa funding that has to be dealt with through congressional funding.
Smith admits that since each visa requires funding, it needs to be funded by two parties to spend.
At least Republican lawmakers signal an interest in the move.
“I want to know how the costs are calculated and I want us to find a solution sooner rather than later to make sure we can get those immigrant special visas for those helping our US military.” Our US mission to Afghanistan, “said GOP representative Austin Scott.
The State Department said they had now added resources and took action to prioritize applications from interpreters and translators, with special consideration for those helping with combat operations. That the spokesperson said The efforts include adding temporary consular staff at the US embassy in Kabul to assist with visa applications.