Guidance for Afghans with Pending U.S. Immigration Cases at Risk of Deportation from Pakistan

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Guidance for Afghans with Pending U.S. Immigration Cases at Risk of Deportation from Pakistan

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Over two years after the U.S. withdrew from Afghanistan in the summer of 2021, there are still Afghans with ongoing U.S. immigration processes stuck abroad. After the Taliban took control of the national government in Afghanistan and the U.S. Embassy in Kabul closed, many Afghans fled to Pakistan. But now, Pakistan’s Ministry of Interior has begun a process to deport Afghans living in Pakistan en masse.

For many applicants with pending processes, the U.S. Department of State has issued letters to show Pakistani officials indicating that they have a pending process and require further access to the U.S. consular services in Pakistan. However, not all applicants have received such letters.

The #AfghanEvac Coalition, a self-organized group of Afghans, veterans, and civilians, has issued the following guidance for the family members of Afghans at threat of deportation from Pakistan:

What do I do if I or someone I know is being arrested, detained, deported, or impacted by Pakistan’s deportation policy?

We are aware of reports of increased checks on Afghans, so we advise that Afghans in Pakistan keep documents in their possession in case they are stopped. Keep both digital and physical copies, and keep the physical copies in a separate location than the original documents.

State Department has established a hotline for Afghans in these circumstances to call. The number is +1 757-916-4100. Days/Hours: Monday-Saturday 11:00pm – 3:00pm ET (next day) =Monday-Saturday 8:00am – 12:00am ISL (next day). State is working to add WhatsApp and possibly extend to 24/7 coverage, but both of those items are still outstanding.

  • Those Afghans who are in Pakistan under CARE support should immediately contact the CARE team in Islamabad at IslamabadTaskforceASIV@state.gov or the hotline if they are detained.
  • Individuals who are in Pakistan who are detained, whether under CARE Support or not, should adhere to the instructions of Pakistani law enforcement.
  • Afghans who are impacted by this deportation policy should be aware that their physical location will not impact their case status with CARE. If individuals in the U.S. immigration pipeline, in either the SIV or USRAP process, are forced to return to Afghanistan, their case will remain active with CARE. If their location does change, update CARETravelData@state.gov with their new location as soon as possible.
  • For people pursuing P1/P2, they should ALSO contact IOM at PIC@iom.int regarding their new location (contact both CARE and IOM).
  • Individuals who face imminent protection threats or have concerns about their safety can contact UNHCR’s protection helpline. Contact details and operating hours are available at https://help.unhcr.org/pakistan/contact/.
    • Those who hold Proof of Registration (PoR) cards, Afghan Citizenship Cards (ACC), and those who registered with UNHCR as seeking asylum in Pakistan prior to February 2022 may find more immediate support from UNHCR. However, this should not deter others with concerns from contacting UNHCR to seek recourse.

For additional possible assistance, view the full #AfghanEvac FAQ here: https://resources.humanrightsfirst.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/12/AfghanEvac-FAQ.pdf.

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