ATA Urges Administration to Prioritize Evacuation of Afghan Interpreters and Their Families

The American Translators Association (ATA) has written letters to President Biden and other administration officials urging Congress to immediately prioritize the evacuation of Afghan interpreters and their families to a safe location outside Afghanistan.

“Acting swiftly is strategically important because linguists are essential in the global war on terror, and their safety is inextricably tied to the safety of us all,” ATA President Ted Wozniak stated in the letters.

“Afghan interpreters in particular have placed their lives on the line countless times over the 20-year span of the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan, protecting our troops and diplomats from harm, helping navigate culturally sensitive and dangerous situations, contributing to improving the quality of life for Afghans and American troops alike. They deserve your attention now.”

ATA President Wozniak also stated that a strong U.S. presence, both by the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. military, must be maintained in Afghanistan “until every translator and interpreter, and their families, who assisted U.S. forces and who wishes to leave the country is safely evacuated.”

“Anything less would constitute a breach of President Biden’s promise that those who helped the U.S. military ‘are not going to be left behind’ and would be a moral and political failure by the United States.”

Read ATA’s letter to President Biden
Read ATA’s letter to the Secretary of Defense, U.S. Department of Defense
Read ATA’s letter to the Director of the National Security Agency
Read ATA’s letter to the Secretary of State, U.S. Department of State

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