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Friday, September 24th, 2021

Lawmakers seek Afghanistan evacuation guidance

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A group of lawmakers have forwarded correspondence to Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, seeking guidance regarding the evacuation of Americans and others from Afghanistan.

Representatives Ami Bera (D-CA), Zoe Lofgen (D-CA), and Jerry Nadler (D-NY) have spearheaded the effort of 12 legislators seeking the plan of action in the evacuation that would also include lawful permanent residents and vulnerable people.

“We commend the American servicemembers and diplomats who worked tirelessly to evacuate U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents (LPR), and vulnerable people out of Afghanistan over the past several weeks,” the legislators wrote. “However, hundreds of at-risk individuals remain in the country and we are deeply concerned for their safety. Our staff has been working around the clock responding to urgent pleas from constituents whose families and colleagues are seeking to flee Afghanistan, and they urgently require timely, post-withdrawal guidance to best assist those in need.”

The lawmakers have requested information regarding the Administration’s plan to repatriate the U.S. citizens and LPRs remaining in Afghanistan and wishing to return to the United States; its plans to contact such individuals to communicate next steps for assistance; and how tracking information is collected from those seeking evacuation or repatriation.

“While we appreciate the information that we have received thus far from the Department of State, Department of Homeland Security and Department of Defense, we require timely and regular updates on the Administration’s plans for continuing to assist these individuals through evacuation assistance, repatriation flights, and other means of relocating to safe countries, including the United States,” the lawmakers concluded.