Gov. McMaster says ‘it is our duty’ to accept Afghan refugees

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – Governor Henry McMaster on Tuesday said that he is committed to accepting Afghan refugees that hold Special Immigrant Visas (SIV’s) for resettlement in South Carolina.

When asked by a reporter during a press conference, McMaster acknowledged that SIV holders are typically Afghans who worked with US troops or diplomats in the region. “Those people… helped protect Americans. Now they are in severe danger,” he said.

“It is our duty to help them. They helped us, we need to help them.”

Gov. Henry Mcmaster

Afghans with ties to the US fear retribution by the Taliban, which has taken power in the country.

Governor McMaster also sent a letter to the State Department Tuesday, requesting information on any South Carolinians that may still be in the country and plans for their evacuation.

Currently, the US is focused on getting American citizens out of the country as well as SIV holders.

Thousands of US troops are on the ground — including the 82nd Airborne Division out of Fort Bragg, which has been tasked with taking over air traffic and securing the airport in Kabul.