When US Withdraws Afghan Translators Worry About Being

Publish Date : 2021-06-10

When US Withdraws Afghan Translators Worry About Being

KABUL, the Asian country — it was an offhand comment, he blurted out in frustration. it would destroy Shoaib Walizada's chances of getting a valuable visa to U.S..

Walizada, the UN agency that understood the US Army for four years until 2013, said that one day he complained, exploitatively, that his designated combat vest was too small. after the episode went mild later that year, Mr Walizada's initial approval for the visa was revoked for "unprofessional behavior."

Walizada, 31, is among thousands of Afghans who have been used by the US government, some as translators, whose applications for a special Migrant Visa, or S.I.V., through a State Department program, were denied.

Program, established to move to U.S. Iraqis and Afghans whose living units are vulnerable because they work for the military or attractive government, have turned down some candidates for petty offences and others for no apparent reason.

Now, as the tug-of-war departs and Afghans experience a growing sense of hysteria and desperation, visa applications have returned to urgency. With the religious movement taking advantage of the US withdrawal, some former translators say they are definitely more than ever to be killed.

"I got a call from the religious movement's verbal communication, 'We can kill you' — they arrested the UN agency I work for for America," Walizada said. He had postponed the wedding because he didn't want to put a married woman in danger, he said, and he had emotions from home to accommodate safety.

The slightest flaw over years of stellar service will thwart visa applications and negate the shining letter of advice from the yank commander. in the last 3 months of 2020 alone, State Department statistics show, 1,646 Afghans were denied one of all special visas, area units issued to candidates meeting difficult needs and stringent background checks even if translators have passed security checks.

Among the reasons cited for the refusal were failure to prove the prescribed length of service, timid documentation, failure to ensure "loyal and valuable service" and "derogatory info."

More than eighteen thousand Afghan area units await selection in the S.I.V. application, in line with the US Embassy in the nation's capital, the capital city of Asia. some say they are overcome by fear, fear they will be rejected, or only approved when they need to be feared and killed.

No One Left Behind, a non-profit organization advocating for the relocation of Afghan translators to U.S., said that three hundred translators or their relatives have been killed since 2014. Thousands of S.I.V. candidates have submitted "threat letters" they have received from religious movements.

The visa program, which was first approved by Congress in 2006 for translators in Asian countries and Asian countries, has long been slowed by delays and chronic congestion. most recently, a 2020 report by State Department military officers identified six serious deficiencies in S.I.V. Afghanistan. processes, along with a shortage of employees and a lack of centralized information.

Many translators complain that they wait months, and in some cases years, for a choice. Some joked that they needed an “S.I.V. syndrome” from constantly working to the State Department website for updates.

Nearly 21,000 visas were issued to Afghans from 2009 to March 2021, in line with State Department figures. slightly under 11,000 visa area units are still offered.

Sayed Obaidullah Amin, 46, United Nations agency understood for the US Marine Corps for 2 years, mentioned that he had passed an AN face-to-face interview at the yank embassy. but he was rejected in 2019; a brief letter citing “lack of trustworthy and valuable service” and “derogatory info regarding the case.”

Mr Amin said he believed S.I.V. The program learns that, during one stint with a Marine unit, he arrived on duty 2 days late when given time off to traumatize his father's attack.

Officials at the State Department and at embassies mentioned that they may not provide parts of the S.I.V. UN agency candidates have been rejected.

Most translators carried thick folders filled with letters from former commanders praising their dedication and courage. A letter from a Marine officer, sent in the hope of overturning Amin's refusal, commended his loyalty and unwavering service.

The officer, Saint Andrew Darlington, a retired captain, said in an AN email that the embassy did not ask questions about the refusal. "Thousands of people like Obaid will surely face death in the next twelve to twenty-four months," he wrote.

Waheedullah Rahmani, 27, admitted that he had been waiting for AN S.I.V. decision. That year, he said, the embassy asked him to return threatening letters and letters of advice. He did, he said, but his emails to the program have since gone unanswered.

“They have put ME in a bad position by not telling ME whether they even processed my application or not,” he said.

Rahmani mentioned that he had served for 2 years as an AN interpreter for the US Army, incidental troops in many firefights.

Now married to a daughter, he teaches English. But everyone at the university knew he had worked for the military yank, he said.

“If religious movements take over, they will only realize ME and kill ME,” Rahmani said. "Then a married woman can't have a husband and my daughter can't have a father."

In a statement on Monday, the religious movement said Afghan translators were not "in danger on our part" but they {should} show "regret for their past actions and should not interact in such activities in the future. However, the statement comes amid a campaign of targeted killings linked to a religious movement that has killed dozens of civilians, government employees, security forces and media employees in the past year.

Translators are tasked with eyes and ears to draw troops, some of whom speak Iranian or Pashto or understand Afghan cultural norms. Translators help navigate social groups and ethnic rivalries. They guide commanders through a usually tense partnership with Afghan security forces, some of whom aim their guns at towing forces.

Most interpreters cover their faces and use yank nicknames such as "Mike" or "Charlie" - particularly describing US service members who interrogate detainees of religious movements. Some of the prisoners mentioned above vowed to kill them once they were released.

Translators were tested invaluable throughout conferences with indigenous Afghan leaders, a pillar of the security effort, where the yunk commander worked to gain the trust of village elders and officers. but some Afghans are supporters of the religious movement.

Mr Amin, for example, "assisted the United States in 'reading the room'" during conferences with indigenous Afghans "to ensure we are prepared to find any religious intruders or spies," wrote Captain Darlington.

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Area units of other NATO countries are speeding up their visa processes for eligible Afghans. On 31 May, the British government announced plans to relocate to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland regarding 3,000 interpreters et al. The UN agency serves the country's military and government.

in U.S., members of Congress, former national security officers and support teams have ironed the State Department to speed up the S.I.V. methods and Congress to provide additional slots.

In nineteen anonymous letters to President Biden, twenty Democratic and Republican senators noted that Afghan staffers had saved the lives of soldiers and diplomats. Senators voiced their support for the addition of 20,000 S.I.V. slots and recommends evacuating candidates to 3rd country to see the process.

John F. Kirby, the Pentagon's press secretary, told reporters in June that the Department of Defense had "placed some resources" into a possible evacuation. He mentioned that no evacuation was ordered, but if there was an order, "we can execute."

On Monday, Foreign Minister Antony J. Blinken told a House committee that the State Department did not dominate the move.

U.S. Embassy in the national capital said late last month that it had briefly added a staff of diplomats to help speed up the S.I.V. apps amid rising demand and Covid-19 restrictions. Staffing has also been increased in Washington, where much of the equipment process is complete, the embassy said.

But those steps mean little to translators whose applications are rejected or remain in uncertainty.

Walizada was injured in the leg during a shootout with the religious movement – as verified in a letter from his US commander. He mentioned that his injuries still frighten him because he lost weight while constantly moving to avoid detection of religious movements.

“If religious movements realize ME, they will torture ME so kill ME,” he said. “Higher if I kill myself first.”

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