Holloman Air Force Base to take in Afghan refugees

August 28, 2021 GMT

ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (AP) — Holloman Air Force Base is among several military installations that will take in Afghan refugees, the U.S. Department of Defense announced Friday.

The base near Alamogordo joins others in Virginia, Texas, Wisconsin and New Jersey that temporarily will provide housing, along with medical and other support for up to 50,000 refugees, their families and other vulnerable Afghans, said Pentagon spokesman John F. Kirby.

Refugees will undergo medical screening, including testing for the coronavirus, before arriving at the military installations. They are coming to the U.S. under the Special Immigrant Visa program.

“Those coming to New Mexico have endured a long and difficult journey, and I’m glad our state will serve as a safe refuge,” said U.S. Sen. Ben Ray Luján of New Mexico.

The Defense Department didn’t say how many refugees would be sent to Holloman or when they would arrive.

The Taliban seized control of most of Afghanistan as the U.S. withdrew support to the Afghan military. Tens of thousands of Afghans have been left the country. President Joe Biden has set Aug. 31 as the deadline to complete the U.S.-led evacuation.