US Senate passes bill for assistance to Americans returning from Afghanistan

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The bill was approved by unanimous consent and US Vice President Kamala Harris came to the Senate to preside over the bill’s passage….reports Asian Lite News

The Senate on Tuesday approved a bill that would provide emergency repatriation assistance to American citizens who have returned from Afghanistan, media reported.

The bill was approved by unanimous consent and US Vice President Kamala Harris came to the Senate to preside over the bill’s passage.

The bill would set aside up to USD 10 million for each fiscal year during fiscal years 2021 and 2022 to provide emergency repatriation assistance to affected individuals, CNN reported.

“Vice President Kamala Harris came to the Senate to preside over the bill’s passage. The bill was approved by unanimous consent during the Senate’s August recess when the chamber came into session for a quick pro-forma session where no other business was conducted,” CNN reported.

It further reported that the bill has already been approved by the House, so it now heads to President Joe Biden’s desk for his signature. Meanwhile, Democratic Sen. Ben Cardin of Maryland requested unanimous consent to pass the bill in the Senate.

People queue up to board a military aircraft of Germany and leave Kabul at Kabul airport, Afghanistan. (XinhuaIANS)

Cardin said the legislation increases “the funds that are available to take care of Americans who have been brought home from Afghanistan. They’ve been uprooted, they were living in Afghanistan, so to take care of their necessities on a short-term basis. It might be housing, … food, transportation, those sorts of issues on a short-term basis,” reported CNN.

The United States forces left Afghanistan on Tuesday morning, marking the end of chaotic and messy exit from America’s longest war.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken terms it a beginning of a new chapter of American engagement with Afghanistan.

“It’s one in which we will lead with our diplomacy. The military mission is over,” he tweeted.

Blinken has announced that the US has suspended diplomatic presence in Kabul and transferred “our operations to Doha, Qatar.”

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