According to the British Ministry of Defence (MoD) figures, obtained by the Independent newspaper, 71,149 applications made by Afghans wishing to be resettled in Britain under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP) scheme, which was designed for those who worked for or the British government agencies in Afghanistan, are yet to be processed.
The MoD figures show that over 127,000 applications were made to the British government, of which 71,149 are yet to be looked at. Thus far, the Independent reports, around 11,000 applicants have been found to eligible under the ARAP scheme.
An MoD spokesperson has told the Independent that “Our priority as set by Ministers, is not simply processing a volume of applications but finding and relocating those Afghans who meet the ARAP criteria through direct service with the British Armed Forces.
“There are fewer than 1,000 interpreters and other staff yet to be allocated a place on the scheme. Our priority is finding them and bringing the individuals and their families to the UK.”
The British government have recently been heavily criticised for not accepting any Afghans under the Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme (ACRS), which was designed to resettle at risk Afghans such as journalists and civil society activists.