Afghanistan: Refugees

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if the Shaheen Regiment of the National Directorate of Security were evacuated under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy during Operation Pitting and relocated to the UK.

Answered on

11 January 2022

We owe a debt of gratitude to all Afghan nationals who risked their lives working alongside UK forces. As such, the ARAP Scheme has been one of the most generous relocation programmes in the world. It is not time-limited and will endure, facilitating the relocation of eligible Afghans and their families, from third countries if possible.

The Ministry of Defence-administered Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP) scheme was established to support former Locally Employed Staff (LES) and their dependants who are assessed to be at serious risk of threat to life as a result of having been directly employed by the UK Government in Afghanistan. There is also some discretion within the rules to consider, on a case-by-case and exceptional basis, those who worked in meaningful and prominent enabling roles alongside HMG and whose responsible HMG unit builds a credible case for consideration under the scheme. Approval in such cases is dependent upon the extent of the individual’s relationship with HMG, the scale of their contribution to our mission, and an assessment of the risks they face, but could include members of National Directorate of Security units.

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