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Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.) led a letter calling on President Joe Biden to take four specific steps to aid Afghan evacuees on October 20, 2021. (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Tlaib Leads Call for Biden to Take 'Commonsense Steps' to Aid Afghan Evacuees

"Our country has long offered shelter to those seeking refuge from catastrophe. Now is the time to continue that tradition and stand beside Afghan evacuees in need."

Jessica Corbett

Michigan Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib led two dozen other Democrats in sending a letter pressuring U.S. President Joe Biden to take several "concrete, commonsense steps" to aid Afghan evacuees with "their transition into life in the United States."

About 53,000 Afghans—roughly half of them children—were brought to the United States during an evacuation of American troops earlier this year. In the letter, Taib and the other lawmakers called on the president to:

  • Waive fees associated with humanitarian parole applications for Afghans;
  • Provide funds for legal assistance for Afghan evacuees;
  • Designate Afghans for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to ensure that all Afghans living in the U.S. are protected against deportation; and
  • Create an alternative mechanism to allow vulnerable Afghans to apply for humanitarian parole without visiting a U.S. embassy while we lack diplomatic representation in Kabul.

"Historically, humanitarian parole applications are sent to U.S. embassies in the country of the parolee," but given the situation in Kabul, "Afghan parolees will be forced to take dangerous routes to third countries" to have their applications processed, the lawmakers explain.

The letter also highlights that "Congress recently authorized significant funding for the resettlement of Afghan parolees" and outlines some relevant portions of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

"The United States has long offered shelter to those seeking refuge from catastrophe," the letter says. "Now is the time to continue this tradition and stand beside the Afghan people in their time of need."

Democrats' demands follow Biden ordering all American troops out of Afghanistan by the end of August after nearly 20 years of war. The messy withdrawal—during which the Taliban seized control of the country—included a U.S. airstrike that killed 10 Afghan civilians, which the Pentagon later admitted was a "horrible mistake," provoking calls for an end to drone attacks.


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EU Joins Rights Group in Condemning Israel's 'Day of Destruction' of Palestinian Homes

"Demolitions are illegal under international law and significantly undermine the prospects for peace."

Brett Wilkins ·


GOP 'Silence Speaks Volumes,' Says Ilhan Omar as Boebert's Bigotry Goes Unpunished

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Africans Should Be 'Applauded, Not Punished,' Say Advocates Amid Omicron Travel Ban

"What is going on right now is inevitable," said African Union Vaccine Delivery Alliance co-chair Dr. Ayoade Alakija. "It's a result of the world's failure to vaccinate in an equitable, urgent, and speedy manner."

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Biden Drilling Report Blasted as 'Shocking Capitulation to the Needs of Corporate Polluters'

"Greenlighting more fossil fuel extraction, then pretending it's OK by nudging up royalty rates, is like rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic," said one campaigner.

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UNESCO Members Adopt First Global AI Ethics Agreement 'To Benefit Humanity'

"We're at a critical juncture in history," said Ethics in Tech founder Vahid Razavi. "We need as humans to come together and decide what is the best course of action to take with these technologies before they surpass us in their abilities."

Brett Wilkins ·

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