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White House calls for an additional $ 30 billion for Afghan disaster recovery and resettlement

WASHINGTON – The White House is asking Congress for at least $ 30 billion to help fund the resettlement of tens of thousands of Afghans and to pay for recovery after Hurricane Ida and other recent natural disasters.

The short-term budget request to Congress, known as the Continuing Resolution, includes $ 6.4 billion to help fund the treatment and resettlement of Afghan refugees, at least $ 10 billion for recovery from Hurricane Ida and 14 billion dollars for other natural disasters, an administration official said. a call with journalists.

The United States plans to bring 64,000 Afghans to the United States by the end of this month and 30,000 over the next 12 months, the official said. Of the refugee funding, $ 2.4 billion will be used to pay for Defense Ministry operations overseas where Afghans are detained and treated. An additional $ 1.7 billion will go to the Department of Health and Human Services to provide funds and resources to Afghans to help them settle in the United States.

Funding for Afghan refugees would also be used to cover transportation costs between supervised treatment sites and the United States, security checks, humanitarian aid, public health checks and vaccinations.

The $ 10 billion requested for Ida’s recovery is only a first estimate and the administration plans to work with Congress to reach a more specific number, the administration official said. President Joe Biden was in New York and New Jersey on Tuesday to assess the damage after visiting Louisiana last week.

“We expect Hurricane Ida to dramatically increase the need for disaster response funding by at least $ 10 billion,” the official said. “And while it will take time to assess the damage and come up with a more accurate estimate, we are committed to working with Congress to meet those needs as well.”

The request also includes funding for previous hurricanes including Laura and Delta, as well as the Puerto Rico earthquake and numerous wildfires in the past 18 months.

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