A number of U.S. Senators have sponsored a new bill aiming to approve 4000 visas for the Afghan nationals who have helped the American forces and are now stranded amid fears of persecution by anti-government armed elements, it has been reported.
The 4000 Special Immigrant Visas (SIV) would be provided for the rest of the federal fiscal year ending on 30th of September, according to Reuters.
The bill has been sponsored by Democratic Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Republican Senators Thom Tillis, Roger Wicker and Gory Garnder and Democrats Jack Reed, Richard Blumenthal and Tim Kaine.
The bill has also been supported by the top U.S. Commander Gen. Scott Miller who is also in command of the NATO-led Resolute Support Mission.
“If the program is not fully resourced, our credibility and the sacrifices made by thousands of Afghans in support of Americans and our Coalition partners could be undermined,” Gen. Miller was quoted as saying by Reuters.
This comes as the U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration had earlier cut the number of U.S. visas provided to Afghans by 60 percent.
About 1,650 Special Immigrant Visas were approved in 2018, down from more than 4,000 in fiscal year 2017, according to a reprot by National Public Radio (NPR).