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Waltz Statement on President Biden’s Afghanistan Announcement

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Thursday, U.S. Congressman Mike Waltz (FL-6) released the following statement regarding President Biden’s Afghanistan announcement:

“It is encouraging to see the Biden Administration finally begin to focus on evacuating Afghan interpreters from Afghanistan so they can be processed through the Special Immigration Visa (SIV) program safety, but I fear time has run out,” said Rep. Waltz.

“For months, the Biden Administration has failed to formulate a comprehensive plan while recklessly rushing a troop withdrawal that did not consider the safety of the Afghans who have fought alongside American soldiers.

“Thousands of Afghan interpreters and their families eagerly await their fate while the clock ticks. As the Taliban continue to gain strength and ground, they are hunting down those who stood with America in our fight against global terror.

“President Biden’s claim that half of Afghans approved for SIV have chosen not to come to America does not comport with what we are hearing on the ground. I call on the White House, Department of Defense, Department of State, and Department of Homeland Security to provide briefings immediately to members of congress so we can understand the scope of the evacuation and ongoing SIV vetting.

“Additionally, we cannot lose sight of the fact the Taliban continue to hold U.S. navy veteran Mark Frerichs hostage and the Biden Administration is losing leverage every day to get him home safely to his family.

“The Obama-Biden Administration prioritized exchanging terrorists for a traitor and deserter Bowe Bergdahl and seem to be taking little action for Mark. Asking a terrorist organization nicely is not a strategy.”

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