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Arizona man still trying to get his family out of Afghanistan

Posted at 5:24 PM, Aug 31, 2021

From thousands of miles away, Hafiz Nadri feels helpless. Watching the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, Nadri watched each hour tick away, knowing hopes of getting his family out were dwindling.

After the last U.S. service member left Afghanistan on Monday, Nadri's brother Abdul, and 22 other family members -- including 12 children -- were left behind. Abdul is one of thousands of Afghans who worked as U.S. contractors, putting him in grave danger as the Taliban assumes control of the country.

"There are a lot of people who have helped the US Army. There are a lot of people in hiding," Hafiz said.

For more than two weeks, Nadri has enlisted the help of state Rep Alma Hernandez, a family friend, who has been trying to facilitate a way for his family to get out. Hernandez was successful in getting another brother and a relative out of the country, but the rest of the family has been forced into hiding.

Hernandez is critical of the way the U.S. left the country, leaving thousands of Afghan allies to be targeted or killed.

"I understand that we could not have this continue for many more years. I know that it was a priority for Americans to get our troops back safely," she said. "I do think that there is more we need to do to ensure the safety of those who worked and helped her US military men and women."

Nadri's brother has already been attacked. "Some people come in the name of the Taliban and stabbed at my brother who worked as a contractor with a US Army. He is now in better condition and they are hiding," he said.

Hernandez said she is not giving up her efforts to get other family members out of the country. As a contractor, Abdul Nadri would likely qualify for a Special Immigrant Visa, allowing him to come to the U.S. and bring members of his family.

Hernandez is working with Senator Mark Kelly's office, but without the help of the military, there are fewer opportunities to get Afghans out of the country.