Special Program announced to resettle Afghans who assisted Canada in Afghanistan

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The Government of Canada on Friday announced a special program to resettle the Afghans who assisted the efforts of Canada in Afghanistan.

Marco E. L. Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, Marc Garneau, Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of National Defence, today announced the new program.

“So many Afghan citizens put themselves at risk to assist Canada, both during and after our military mission in Afghanistan. Now they face even greater threats from the Taliban, and we are doing everything possible to bring them to safety. Lives hang in the balance, which is why we’re taking timely and decisive action to support the Afghans who supported Canada, and offer them a future in this country. Canada will do right by those who did so much for us,” said Mendicino.

Meanwhile, Garneau said “Canada has a responsibility to protect the brave people in Afghanistan who have helped us carry out our mission over 20 years to advance human rights, education, health and security in their country. As violence spreads, ensuring the safety and security of all of our personnel, whether Canadian or Afghan, past or present, and the people who are helping us on the ground, is our top priority.”

Minister Sajjan said “I know first-hand about the important work of those who helped the Canadian Armed Forces while Canada was in Afghanistan. We owe it to those who served alongside our members in uniform to make sure that they and their families are safe. That is why the Canadian Armed Forces and the Department of National Defence have been working with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada from the beginning. We will continue that work until the Afghans who were integral to our work in Afghanistan are safe here in Canada.”

Those eligible include interpreters who worked with the Canadian Armed Forces, cooks, drivers, cleaners, construction workers, security guards and locally engaged staff employed at the Embassy of Canada to Afghanistan, and their family members, the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) said in a statement.

The statement further added criteria to be referred for resettlement are based on applicants’ significant or enduring relationship with the Government of Canada. Applicants must meet all usual admissibility requirements, including security, criminal and health screenings, and processing timelines will be expedited. Applicants will also be subject to existing COVID-19 public health measures and safety protocols.

“To protect their privacy, as well as the safety of extended family who may remain in Afghanistan, we will not disclose the identity of those who will be resettled, how they will be evacuated or when,” IRCC said, adding that “For security reasons, we also will not comment on specific operational matters of our missions abroad.”

According to IRCC, over 800 were able to resettle in Canada over the past decade. However, IRCC added that many are still in Afghanistan and with the situation in the country deteriorating rapidly, many have become Taliban targets due to their work.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. Marketing Manager, Afghanistan Times Daily
    I was born in 1985 to a small family in Kabul. Graduated from high school in 2004, I started my career in Afghanistan Times Daily in 2006 as a journalist. Given the talent I exhibited during that year, I was offered a job as marketing employee. I was promoted as marketing manager in Afghanistan Times in 2010 and been serving in the same position for over 11 years so far.
    During the period of 2018-2019, we defied all odds and all threats to deliver Afghanistan Times newspaper to the Canadian Embassy in Kabul. I was managing the deliveries despite the threat that I faced from the Taliban.
    As you know, the situation in Afghanistan is deteriorating with the media community being the prime target of the Taliban. I fear for my family’s life and can’t risk staying here any longer.
    I am pinning my hopes on Canadian government to include me in the resettlement program.

  2. I am Seddiq Hussainy, and been working at Afghanistan Times as a full-time delivery officer. I was in charge of distribution of Afghanistan Times daily to the Canadian Embassy in 2018-2019, during which we delivered the paper every day under supervision of Mohammad Parwiz Arian.
    But since then, Afghanistan has become a hotbed of violence and I am fearful I will face persecution when the Taliban take over as they are advancing so fast. I fear for my life.
    I hope the Canadian government considers this application as a desperate call for help and include me in the resettlement program for those who worked with the Canadians in Afghanistan.
    I appreciate your time and concern and thank you.

  3. I also have to mention that my family lives on the outskirts of Sar-e-Pul province now. I myself witnesses our district fall to the Taliban. My father is a teacher and has quit his job fearing his life.

  4. Hi
    My Name is Abdul Rabi “Fahim”
    Son of Fazel Rabi, from Afghanistan Kabul,
    Employee of Mumtaz Group Construction group, Kabul, Afghanistan.
    I was born in 1988 to a small family in Kabul.  I got my Diploma of Civil Engineering from Afghanistan Technical and Vocational Institute in 2008,
    After graduating, I have been working with domestic and foreign institutions in the field of construction for more than 12 years.
    My father, who had previously worked for Supreme Foodservice logistics & supply for more than about 5 years, was later killed.
    My brother, also who had previously worked with Supreme Foodservice logistic & supply.
    He was shot dead by the Taliban while transporting food to the International Coalition Forces and ISAF.
    As you know, the situation in Afghanistan has been deteriorating lately, and the Taliban’s main target is the peoples who worked with international organizations, especially those who themselves or their relatives have collaborated with the International Coalition Forces and ISAF.
    I am afraid for my family and I can not increase the risk of staying here.
    I hope the Government of Canada will include me in the resettlement program.

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