Government announces plans to resettle 20,000 Afghans in UK

afghans uk

Government announces plans to resettle 20,000 Afghans in UK

The government has launched a new scheme to help 20,000 Afghan refugees resettle in the UK.

This comes after the US withdrew troops from Afghanistan in August, and the Taliban retook control of the country following almost 20 years out of power.

The UK formally opened the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme on 6 January 2022.

Anyone who is resettled through the scheme will receive indefinite leave to enter or remain in the UK, and will be able to apply for British citizenship after 5 years in the UK under existing rules.

According to Victoria Atkins, Justice Minister and MP for Louth and Horncastle, more than 5,000 people will be taken in during the first year.

Labour said the delay in beginning the programme had “put lives at risk”, while Ms Atkins warned that prioritising applicants had already proved “very difficult”.

When asked by Diane Johnson, Labour MP and chair of the Home Affairs Committee, whether the government would ensure councils had the resources to support the scheme, Ms Atkins acknowledged said she was working with them to “clarify” the details surrounding funding.

She added that under the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme, the first people to be resettled would be those who had already been evacuated to the UK.

This includes women’s rights activists and journalists.

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