Miami professor befriends Afghani refugees in Ukraine, worries for their safety

A Miami University professor, who travels frequently to the Ukraine, says he is in touch with Afghanistan refugees transported to the country from their homeland when American military forces withdrew from their country. Now housed in a Kiev hotel by the U.S., the Miami professor fears they will be abandoned should Russian forces invade Ukraine. Pictured is a Ukrainian soldier near the front lines in the border region next to Russia. (Tyler Hicks/The New York Times)

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A Miami University professor, who travels frequently to the Ukraine, says he is in touch with Afghanistan refugees transported to the country from their homeland when American military forces withdrew from their country. Now housed in a Kiev hotel by the U.S., the Miami professor fears they will be abandoned should Russian forces invade Ukraine. Pictured is a Ukrainian soldier near the front lines in the border region next to Russia. (Tyler Hicks/The New York Times)

A Miami University professor is worried Afghanistan refugees, who he said were being transported from their collapsed nation, are vulnerable in Ukraine’s capital and caught in limbo as American officials have yet to bring them here.

J. Marcus Jobe, a Miami Professor Emeritus who has traveled to the Ukraine frequently since 1993, said he met the 20 Afghani refugees while staying in the same Kiev city hotel last fall.

Russian armed forces have been poised on Ukraine’s border and may be readying to invade the nation, according to recent reports.

President Joe Biden and other administration officials have warned Americans to leave Ukraine.

Jobe said he approached and chatted with the refugees in the fall. They have told him they were promised transport first out of their country and later out of Ukraine, but now have been informed U.S. officials will not arrange their travel to America.

He has since stayed in touch with them and they are worried for their safety, he said.

“As of (Sunday) they have no news and no way of getting out and the families are fearful,” said Jobe.

“The U.S. government is telling all citizens to get out, but what about these guys?” he said. He described the refugees as being transported by America and placed in a Kiev hotel for months awaiting their next travel arrangements to the U.S.

“They (refugees) should not be there this long.”

Jobe works in Ukraine universities and schools while also doing Christian missionary work. He said he has asked Ohio-area Congressional members to help assist the refugees.

He urges others to contact their area, national legislators to lobby them to assist Afghanistan refugees in the Ukraine, who fled their homeland when American troops withdrew from their nation in 2021.

“This is a continued debacle from what happened in Kabul,” said Jobe of the withdraw of American armed forces from the Afghanistan’s capital city.

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