As many as 100 people evacuated from Afghanistan for resettlement in the United States have been flagged on the Department of Defense terrorism watch list.
“Moreover, the Defense Department’s Automated Biometric Identification System has flagged up to 100 of the 7,000 Afghans evacuated as prospective recipients of Special Immigration Visas as potential matches to intelligence agency watch lists, a second official said,” a Defense One report revealed.
“There’s certainly been a number of them” who triggered alerts, requiring agents to pull those evacuees aside for further screening, the first official said. In most cases, those Afghans — many of whom have already been vetted through the special immigrant visa process — were cleared by follow-on screening,” it added.
An NBC News report recorded at least one method being used by some Afghan evacuees on terrorism watch lists.
“Vetting at Hamid Karzai International Airport is complicated by the fact that biometric screening isn’t available, according to an internal State Department memo obtained by NBC News,” it noted.
“The U.S. mission team reported at least five cases of Afghans who presented U.S. passports that didn’t belong to them,” the NBC News report explained.
The Biden administration has sought to assure Americans that Afghans entering America for safety are properly screened. Though up to 100 people have been flagged so far, it is uncertain if and how many have passed through the screening process with plans to cause harm in America.
Refugees are expected to receive temporary housing at U.S. military bases, according to reports. Four bases have been mentioned so far, including Fort Bliss in El Paso near the Texas border.