Chapter 12 Updates - September 2021

Claims for International Protection

Afghan Refugees

Following the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan, the Home Office have set up an Afghan Citizens Resettlement Scheme (ACRS). The 20,000 places on the scheme cannot be applied for but will be filled in one of three ways. Firstly, Afghans evacuated from Kabul airport under “Operation Pitting” who did not qualify for existing schemes will be allowed to stay. Secondly, some will be selected by the United Nations Refugee Agency, with “women and girls at risk, and ethnic, religious and LGBT minority groups at risk” being prioritised. The third is a “referral process” for “members of Afghan civil society who supported the UK and international community effort in Afghanistan. This category may include human and women’s rights activists, prosecutors and others at risk.”

Outside this framework, there will be no special treatment for Afghan asylum seekers. The Home Office says that it “will not accept asylum claims at our Embassies, High Commissions or VACs overseas or otherwise”.