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VOA Immigration Weekly Recap, Aug. 13–19 

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Here is a look at immigration-related news around the U.S. this week. Questions? Tips? Comments? Email the VOA immigration team: 

Afghan Pilots Wait in Pakistan, Hoping for Resettlement to US 

Sitting on the carpet in a small, third-floor apartment of a crowded building on the edge of the Pakistani capital, Islamabad, six Afghan men sip traditional green tea as they scroll through messages and videos on their phones. All of them are anxiously awaiting the same thing — an email that will tell them where they stand in their journey to resettlement in the United States. Immigration reporter Aline Barros and Sarah Zaman, Pakistan bureau chief for Voice of America, have the story. 

Afghans Waiting to Resettle in US Have Priority Under This Program

Two years ago, when the Taliban seized power in Afghanistan, the U.S. Embassy in Kabul closed and the U.S. military evacuated more than 100,000 Afghans in a chaotic withdrawal. A significant number of evacuees who worked for the U.S. government during the war are still going through immigration proceedings to allow them to permanently live in the United States. Aline Barros reports. 

Afghan Refugee Who Crossed Into US From Mexico Faces Hardships

Mohammad Siddiq Habibi crossed the U.S.-Mexico border illegally and now lives without documents, navigating life and work in the U.S. VOA’s Fahim Siddiqi reports from San Diego, California, narrated by Bezhan Hamdard. 

Barrels of Drinking Water for Migrants Walking Through Texas Have Disappeared

As one of the worst heat waves on record set in across much of the southern United States this summer, authorities and activists in South Texas found themselves embroiled in a mystery: Barrels of lifesaving water that a human rights group had strategically placed for wayward migrants traveling on foot had vanished. 

VOA Day In Photos: Migrants arrive in Dungeness, Britain 

Dozens of men, women and children were brought ashore on the southern coast of England, tired but relieved to be on land after making the risky sea crossing from France in rubber dinghies.  

Around the world 

Sudan War Takes Disastrous Toll on Lives of Millions

Four months into the war in Sudan, humanitarian leaders are highlighting the devastating impact the brutal conflict has had on millions of people whose lives have been destroyed and whose basic human rights have been violated. Lisa Schlein reports for VOA from Geneva. 

Rainy Season Snarls Aid Delivery to Sudan War Refugees

The start of the rainy season in Sudan and neighboring Chad is making it difficult to deliver aid to refugees from Sudan’s war. From Adenour, Chad, Henry Wilkins looks at some of the logistical challenges faced by those trying to deliver aid.  

A Museum in Delhi Records Stories of Displacement when India Was Divided into Two Countries

When Britain granted India independence in 1947, the subcontinent was divided along religious lines, triggering an exodus of an estimated 12 million people amid carnage and violence across the newly carved borders of the two countries, India and Pakistan. Anjana Pasricha reports from New Delhi. 

Young Afghan Artist Who Fled to Pakistan Faces Uncertain Future

After the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021, many artists fled the country. Young artist Mariam Kawsari says the return of the Taliban made it difficult for her to express herself. Muska Safi reports from Islamabad, narrated by Bezhan Hamdard.

Britain Rejects Claims It Was Slow to Evacuate Asylum-Seekers After Bacteria Outbreak

Britain’s government Monday rejected claims that it was slow to evacuate asylum-seekers from a barge moored off the south coast of England once traces of the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease were found in the ship’s water system. The Associated Press reports.  

Startup Incubator Launched for New Hong Kong Migrants to UK 

A business organization founded by Hong Kongers in London is launching a startup program to help new Hong Kong migrants establish businesses in the United Kingdom.  Kris Cheng reports. 

60-Plus Senegalese Migrants Feared Dead on Monthlong Voyage to Spain

More than 60 migrants are feared dead after a Spanish fishing vessel rescued a boat off the Atlantic archipelago of Cape Verde that originally had more than 100 people aboard, authorities and migrant advocates said Thursday. The Associated Press reports. 

France Takes Over Investigation Into Migrant Channel Deaths

Paris prosecutors on Sunday took over the investigation into the deaths of at least six migrants whose boat sank trying to cross the channel between France and England, as police hunted the traffickers responsible. AFP reports.  

Uzbek Border Town Adjusts to the Taliban as Neighbors

Surrounded by orchard trees and flowers, a newly renovated house in Surkhandarya, Uzbekistan, boasts a large courtyard and barn. Sipping green tea in the sweltering summer heat, a group of local women of different ages and backgrounds told VOA that life near the Afghan border has never been easy, but they now worry more about their neighbors. Navbahor Imamova reports.  

In brief

— The U.S. Department of Homeland Security, through U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, has reopened a field office in Havana, Cuba. The office is expected to assist with U.S. immigration benefits and services, including conducting interviews and processing cases for pending Cuban Family Reunification Parole cases and Refugee/Asylee Relative Petitions.