Earlier this year, military translator Sakhidad Afghan, age 26, was kidnapped, tortured, and killed by Taliban militants. Afghan had been waiting for years for the U.S. government to make due on its promise to issue him a visa to the United States.
Sakhidad Afghan worked as a translator for the U.S. Marines and Air Force since around 2008. Four years ago, he applied for a U.S. visa under a program for at-risk military translators. He was still on the waiting list when the Taliban reportedly kidnapped him from a bazaar this spring and executed him in the back of a trailer truck.
…"This horrifying incident is unfortunately just one example of how each passing day is another mortal threat to our Iraqi and Afghan allies," said Katherine Reisner, national policy director at [the Iraqi Refugee Assistance Project].
"It shows our veterans' dedication to their allies overseas, and how much hope they place in the SIV program," she added. "We fail our veterans when the SIV program fails. And it is a call to action for the Departments of State and Homeland Security to act justly and expeditiously on all SIV applications."
Last year, Reason TV producer Amanda Winkler spoke to former translator Janis Shinwari on how the slow visa process is putting translators from Afghanistan and Iraq at risk.