WREXHAM looks set to welcome in ten families from Afghanistan whose lives are in danger after working with the British armed forces.
The UK Government is urgently seeking to relocate hundreds of Afghans who worked on its behalf, mostly as interpreters, as well as their family members.
The decision has been made due to concerns for their safety with international troops preparing to leave the country.
Wrexham Council was initially asked to take in a total of five families at risk of reprisals from the Taliban as part of the Home Office’s Afghan Relocation and Assistance Policy.
However, the local authority has offered to provide accommodation for double that amount to ensure people aren’t left behind.
Cllr Hugh Jones, the council’s lead member for people, said: “We recognise a particular case for these workers who have done a very important job in supporting our armed forces and our whole presence in Afghanistan.
“They put their lives at risk in order to do that and it’s important that they’re not left stranded.
“We feel that apart from our human responsibility to respond to these people, we have a duty of care as they have given service to our country and to our armed forces in particular.
“This is why instead of going for five families, we’ve offered to support with ten.”
Families have already begun to arrive in the UK and will continue over the next two months, with frequent flights expected up to September.
Cllr Jones said those housed in Wrexham would be supported to access housing and education.
He added: “We’ve got a very proud record in Wrexham of resettlement and I think this builds on that.
“We’re uniquely placed because of the experience we’ve got.”
The scheme has been fully funded by the UK Government with no cost to the council.
An update on the initiative will be provided to executive board members at a meeting being held on Tuesday (July 13, 2021).