Gov't reluctant to let in Afghan people who helped Dutch troops
Apart from Afghan interpreters, the cabinet does not intend to generously allow Afghans who helped Dutch troops to come to the Netherlands. The government believes this would lead to an "uncontrollable increase" in asylum applications.
Afghans who worked as interpreters for Dutch soldiers are at risk there, now that the Taliban has conquered large parts of the country. That is why the cabinet is busy moving the interpreters and their families "to the Netherlands as soon as possible", according to the Ministry of Defense.
But for other Afghans who worked with the Netherlands, such as security guards or logistics staff, "the cabinet is reluctant to honor requests from non-interpreters", the Ministry of Defense said. "The picture is that broadening the criteria for being brought to the Netherlands will lead to an uncontrollable increase in the number of applications."
According to Defense, until last week 440 asylum applications were submitted by Afghans who say they worked as interpreters. That included a "growing number of falsified applications", according to the Ministry. A total of 126 applications from Afghans have been approved so far and of them 108 interpreters and their families are already in the Netherlands.
Earlier on Wednesday, the cabinet decided not to carry out deportations of Afghan asylum seekers for the next six months, due to the deteriorating security situation in the country. Various parties in the lower house of parliament pushed for such a moratorium.
Reporting by ANP