UK record just as poor as that of US on Afghan interpreters | Letters

UK record just as poor as that of US on Afghan interpreters | Letters

Despite public and parliamentary denunciation of the present approach, the government’s shameful attitude persists, writes retired colonel Simon Diggins

Your video about former Afghan interpreters for US troops (12 February, theguardian.com) is deeply poignant and highlights a shameful abandonment of those who served in their fight against the Taliban. Sadly, the UK’s attitude has, if anything, been worse.

The UK has chosen to make an almost entirely arbitrary distinction between the minority of interpreters who had served for 12 months, in Helmand, between 19 December 2011 and 19 December 2012, and the overwhelming majority, some 2,000, who hadn’t. For the former, there is the possibility of a visa for themselves and their families and some 390 former interpreters have been granted visas; for the rest, the majority, there has been only one successful application and he was a triple amputee.

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