Gov. Hutchinson: Arkansas allotted up to 98 Afghan refugees

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Afghan refugees are processed at Fort Bliss’ Doña Ana Village where they are being housed, in New Mexico, Friday, Sept. 10, 2021. The Biden administration provided the first public look inside the U.S. military base where Afghans airlifted out of Afghanistan are screened, amid questions about how the government is caring for the refugees and vetting them. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson announced Thursday that the state could welcome as many as 98 Afghan refugee cases after receiving notification from the White House.

The governor says he has been briefed on the security vetting, health screenings and vaccinations that will be implemented by federal partners for the refugees.

Hutchinson also noted that placement of the refugees would be facilitated by Arkansas faith-based groups and local sponsors.

“We are expecting Afghan refugees in the near future with more coming as they are assigned to the resettlement agencies in the state by their national parent organizations,” Hutchinson said. “Refugee relocation is being assisted by faith-based organizations and local sponsors so refugees will successfully integrate to life in Arkansas.”

According to a national report, three neighboring states are taking in many more refugees, with Texas getting approximately 4,500 refugees, Oklahoma getting around 1,800 and Missouri getting 1,200.