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Statement by Ambassador Philip S. Goldberg
August 20, 2021

Thank you, President Duque. We are deeply grateful for your generous announcement that underscores the compassion of the Colombian people toward those in need. Colombia is a great friend of the United States, and we are thankful to you for answering the call to provide humanitarian support to those Afghan citizens who worked with us to spread democracy and freedom in a region where those fundamental values–cherished by both our countries–are in short supply.  Many details remain, of course, but the United States is working all around the world to fulfill our obligation to Afghans who worked with us and for us.  The hospitality for this short-term effort will be Colombian; the costs will be covered by the United States.

The United States remains committed to providing safe haven to these Afghan citizens, and we greatly appreciate the government and people of Colombia providing them temporary refuge. It is a symbol of our unity and friendship. Thank you, President Duque, for your leadership on this issue, just as you have led the response to the humanitarian disaster in Venezuela.