PRINCE GEORGE, Va -- The Fort Lee Military Base will temporarily house approximately 2,500 Afghans along with their families who assisted the U.S. military as they complete their special immigrant visa application process.
The move comes as part of the Biden administration’s recently announced “Operation Allies Refuge” meant to help Afghans who helped the U.S. Military in some way during the 20-year war who are now facing threats from the Taliban.
Those housed at Fort Lee will also undergo medical screening and other administrative requirements.
According to Pentagon press secretary John Kirby who spoke to a group of reporters July 19, other domestic and overseas locations are also being considered by the Defense Department for the applicants who haven’t gotten as far in the vetting process.
The Biden administration made announcements earlier this year of their intention to withdraw all U.S. forces, Afghans who worked as translators and other support staff from Afghanistan after a U.S. presence there which has lasted for two decades since the events of 9/11.
“Thanks to the Afghan SIV program, which I have long supported, Afghans who risked their lives supporting the U.S. can now escape the dangers they face due to their service to our nation," said Sen. Tim Kaine (D-Va) in a statement released by his office.
"These brave men and women risked their lives to aid our armed forces and deserve our utmost gratitude. These individuals will be able to complete the final steps of their Special Immigrant Visa process under the protection of the United States.” said Rep. Donald McEachin (D-4th) in a released statement.