Press Release

Fortenberry Helps Rescue Abandoned Biden Interpreter

Oct 14, 2021
Press Release

(WASHINGTON, DC) – This morning, on the BBC World Service, Congressman Jeff Fortenberry (NE-01) outlined his work and that of the Human First Coalition in bringing Joe Biden’s abandoned Afghanistan interpreter and others facing persecution in Afghanistan to safety.  Fortenberry made the following statement about ongoing rescue efforts and the need for the Biden State Department to step up its support.

“Let me commend Safi Rauf and Human First Coalition for their heroic efforts to get President Joe Biden’s translator out of Afghanistan, and for saving thousands of lives, including Americans, Special Immigrant Visa holders, religious minorities, and others who are in grave threat of persecution.  I am in continual dialogue with neighboring countries to aid in this monumental rescue effort.  I am particularly grateful to Pakistan for their help, and to Albania for hosting a number of refugees.  It would be helpful if the State Department could now come through and join with courageous organizations on the ground to get remaining Americans and others facing imminent persecution out,” Fortenberry said.

“The rapid collapse of Afghanistan and the chaotic, incoherent withdrawal has deeply troubled Americans.  It was particularly hard for us in Nebraska.  Omaha native, Corporal Daegan Page, was among the 13 service members who died in the Kabul Airport terrorist attack.  That the Afghan rescue effort is being led by Omaha Millard High School graduate and University of Nebraska medical student Safi Rauf should make all Nebraskans proud,” Fortenberry added. 

“Organizations like Human First are, in a certain sense, replacing government efforts. But they need the support of the United States government and charitable organizations to finish this work so we can save more lives,” Fortenberry added.

Link to Fortenberry BBC interview:


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