Some Afghan Children Evacuated Without Parents

Many may never be reunited with their families. 

There are roughly 1,450 Afghan children who have been evacuated to the United States without their parents since August. Now, months later, it is unclear when, how, or if, some of their families will be able to reunite. The numbers from the Office of Refugee Resettlement reveal the devastating reality of the evacuations and their aftermath. 

Many of the children tried to flee Afghanistan with their families but got separated in the chaos, advocates say. Some lost touch with their parents during the bombing at Kabul’s Hamid Karzai International Airport, and some of their parents did not survive the terror attack. 

The vast majority of the children who were brought to the U.S. without their parents were quickly released to live with sponsors, including family members they may have fled with or other relatives who were already living in the United States. 

Advocates say the children, already traumatized by what they went through in Afghanistan, are living in limbo and desperate for answers about what’s next. 

The Department of Health and Human Services says the government is doing everything it can to help reunite unaccompanied Afghan minors with caregivers, including parents and immediate family who remain in Afghanistan, but leaving that country remains a significant challenge. The department cannot say specifically how many of the 1,450 children brought to the U.S. unaccompanied have been reunited with parents or how many parents remain in Afghanistan. 

Officials note that the number of Afghan children who remain in custody is a small fraction of the total number of Afghans who were evacuated to the United States. 

As the Lord Leads, Pray with Us…

  • For the Afghan children who face uncertainty over reuniting with parents. 
  • For government officials and independent advocates who are working to ease the burden and trauma of these children. 

Sources: CNN, NPR


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