Rape Case Involving Afghan Man Prompts Leaders to Call for Halt to Resettlement in Montana
18:39 GMT 21.10.2021 (Updated: 13:25 GMT 06.08.2022)
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - A rape case involving an Afghan man in the US state of Montana has prompted Governor Greg Gianforte, Sen. Steve Daines and Rep. Matt Rosendale to call for a halt to the resettlement of Afghans in the state until the Biden administration provides assurances on the vetting process, the leaders said in statements on Thursday.
“While I welcome our fully-vetted Afghan allies to Montana, this situation and others across the country raise serious concerns about whether the Biden administration is meeting its obligations to fully vet Afghans prior to resettlement. I'm calling on President Biden to immediately halt resettlements to Montana until federal agencies provide me with adequate assurance that Afghans coming to Montana are fully-vetted in accordance with federal law,” Gianforte said in a statement to news outlet KGVO.
The Afghan man alleged to have raped an 18-year old girl in the city of Missoula. Zabihullah Mohmand, did not go through the 14-step, 18-24 month vetting process required to obtain a US visa and was instead paroled into the country by the Department of Homeland Security without proper screening, according to Rosendale’s statement, posted on his official Twitter. Mohmand is being charged with one count of sexual intercourse without consent and being jailed on a $50,000 bond.
Daines echoed Gianforte’s call to halt the resettlement of Afghans in Montana until the Biden administration provides answers about the vetting process. This is a continuation of the fallout of Biden’s “disastrous withdrawal” from Afghanistan, Daines added in his statement to KGVO.
Mohmand’s attorney argued during an initial hearing that cultural and language barriers may have played a role in the alleged rape, Rosendale said. In a statement in September, Rosendale said that the US should try and resettle Afghans in other countries nearby Afghanistan that share their values and culture, especially if proper vetting cannot be ensured.
“For months I have warned of the consequences of admitting and resettling unvetted Afghan nationals throughout our country. These unvetted Afghans do not share our culture and our values, and as this horrific incident shows, they represent a serious risk to our communities,” Rosendale said in the statement.
Like Gianforte and Daines, Rosendale called for a halt to the resettlement of Afghans, except across the entire US. He also called for a removal of Afghans who have already been resettled.