The household of an 11-year-old Afghan refugee stranded in France after getting separated from his mother and father within the Kabul airport bombing has accused Priti Patel of creating “false guarantees” over protected routes into the UK.
Qamar Jabarkhyl, a 28-year-old UK citizen, stated his “coronary heart melts” when his younger cousin, Obaidullah, calls him crying every single day from the tiny flat the place he’s staying in Strasbourg.
Obaidullah and his mother and father, alongside along with his twin brother and older sister, fled his residence metropolis of Jalalabad through the Taliban takeover final summer time.
They wished to catch a flight to the UK to stick with Mr Jabarkhyl, however had been thrown aside as they waited to board a aircraft when a bomb was detonated outdoors the airport on August 26.
Mr Jabarkhyl instructed the PA information company: “It gave the impression of full chaos from what Obaidullah instructed me. He was holding palms along with his twin brother they usually ran one in the direction of the (airport) gates and their household ran the opposite manner.”
He believes the brothers had been flown to Doha, the place, exhausted from the journey, Obaidullah fell asleep and received misplaced when his twin went to the bathroom.
The teenager, then 10, was woken up and ushered in a unique course by strangers who promised him that he could be reunited along with his brother on the aircraft, his cousin stated.
However he was mistakenly placed on a separate flight to France, the place he has been caught “sad and scared” for the final eight months, Mr Jabarkhyl, an engineer, stated.
A 22-year-old Afghan refugee residing in a studio flat in Strasbourg has taken Obaidullah underneath his wing, however works lengthy hours and can’t afford to take care of him full-time.
In March, a household reunion visa software was made for Obaidullah on the recommendation of the House Workplace, which promised it will be handled swiftly, Mr Jabarkhyl stated.
The identical month, Obaidullah had his eleventh birthday, 1000’s of miles away from his family members for the primary time.
“It was actually exhausting. I requested the man he lives with to purchase him a birthday cake however he stated he was crying all day lengthy. He didn’t even need to lower his personal cake,” Mr Jabarkhyl stated.
“It simply melts your coronary heart when an 11-year-old boy is looking 20 instances a day simply to say ‘whats up’ and ‘hello.’
“He’s not the identical boy I might discuss to on the telephone in Afghanistan years in the past, telling me tons of of tales about his associates, what greens his household is rising of their backyard.”
4 months later, the household say the House Workplace has nonetheless failed to substantiate whether or not Obaidullah will have the ability to stick with them within the UK.
“I simply really feel the House Workplace don’t even care, with these empty guarantees Priti Patel makes about letting folks from Afghanistan settle within the nation,” Mr Jabarkhyl stated.
Obaidullah’s mother and father and sister couldn’t be evacuated and have moved to a rural space of Afghanistan after Jalalabad was overtaken by the Taliban, whereas his twin made it safely to the UK, the cousin stated.
The teenager is determined to be reunited his brother and ultimately the remainder of his household, however his mom is terrified she might by no means see both of her sons once more, in accordance with Mr Jabarkhyl.
“She thinks that she is going to by no means see them once more. She thinks she will probably be killed or they are going to be killed,” he stated.
It comes after Mr Jabarkhyl’s constituency MP, Bob Blackman, raised Obaidullah’s case within the Home of Commons, describing the forms surrounding biometric playing cards and purposes as “a nightmare”.
As much as 20,000 refugees are anticipated to reach underneath the ACRS, with people and households who had been dropped at security underneath Operation Pitting – the preliminary British army rescue mission – prioritised within the first a part of the scheme.
The 2 remaining routes will embrace permitting at-risk British Council and safety contractors to be resettled within the UK and the United Nations Excessive Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to additionally refer refugees for resettlement.
The House Workplace has been contacted for remark.