Georgia to take in nearly 1,100 Afghan refugees, White House confirms

CLARKSTON, Ga. — Channel 2 has learned that nearly 1,100 Afghan refugees will be coming to Georgia following the Taliban takeover of the country.

Senior White House officials confirmed that number this morning. Refugees will be relocated to 46 states across the U.S.

Channel 2′s Richard Elliot was in downtown Clarkston, where some of those refugees could be headed. Clarkston is a federally-designated refugee resettlement community.

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Gov. Brian Kemp’s office confirmed that all of the refugees who are coming to Georgia are vetted and passed medical screenings. Kemp said the state has no say where the federal government relocates refugees.

“We owe it to those individuals to protect them,” Kemp said last month. “You know, whether we bring them here or not, I think it’s beside the point. If that’s done, they need to be properly vetted, but they don’t need to be allowed to be hunted down by a bunch of Taliban terrorists over in Afghanistan.”

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Clarkston Mayor Beverly Burks said that when they arrive, they’ll be welcomed.

Clarkston is already home to more than 50 different nationalities.

“Clarkston is what I like to say is the melting pot for the United States,” Burks said.

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Burks said they usually don’t get a heads up from the federal government about refugees, instead they work with resettlement agencies to help.

“So they’re not going through the normal process that you see with our refugees, and so you know, we need to make sure that we coordinate not only with our resettlement agencies but on a federal level as well,” Burks said.

There are also other refugee communities around the state that could take some of the Afghan refugees in.