New York ready to accept almost 1K more Afghan refugees, Hochul says

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Huddled masses — New York welcomes you!

The Empire State is ready to accept more than 860 refugees in the coming weeks as the Biden Administration’s airlift brings thousands of desperate Afghan allies to the United States after their government fell to the Taliban and forced them to flee.

“As the world watches the instability in Afghanistan unfold, New York is stepping up to once again serve as a beacon of hope and refuge,” said Gov. Kathy Hochul in a statement released late Wednesday.

“The richness of culture and community that refugees and immigrants bring to our state is beyond measure, and the message to the world in no uncertain terms is that our state is committed to helping those who seek shelter on our shores,” she added.

State officials had already agreed with the feds to take 1,320 refugees between October 1, 2020 through September 30, 2021 — and have already resettled 458 in communities across New York, leaving capacity for 862 people.

Gov. Kathy Hochul says New York will “serve as a beacon of hope and refuge” for incoming evacuees from Afghanistan.
AFP via Getty Images

Additionally, the state said that its agencies and networks of contracted non-profits could handle upwards of 5,000 refugees if needed.

New York has long been the first port of call for many families immigrating or fleeing from other parts of the world.

An Afghan family arrives at a terminal in the Dulles International Airport in Dulles, Virginia on August 25, 2021.
An Afghan family arrives at a terminal in the Dulles International Airport in Dulles, Virginia on August 25, 2021.
Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

That reputation was codified in the famed inscription at the Statue of Liberty, from Emma Lazarus’ poem “The New Colossus,” which reads in part: “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.”

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