FBI investigating alleged assault of female service member by group of male Afghan refugees at Fort Bliss

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Afghan refugees line up for food in a dining hall at Fort Bliss’ Doña Ana Village, in New Mexico, where they are being housed, Friday, Sept. 10, 2021. The Biden administration provided the first public look inside the U.S. military base where Afghans airlifted out of Afghanistan are screened, amid questions about how the government is caring for the refugees and vetting them. (AP Photo/David Goldman)

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Fort Bliss officials say an investigation is underway after a female service member was allegedly assaulted by ‘a small group of male evacuees’ at the Doña Ana County Range complex where thousands of Afghan refugees are being housed.

Below is a statement from Fort Bliss officials on the incident:

“We can confirm a female service member supporting Operation Allies Welcome reported being assaulted on Sept. 19 by a small group of male evacuees at the Doa Ana Complex in New Mexico. We take the allegation seriously and appropriately referred the matter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The safety and well-being of our service members, as well as all of those on our installations, is paramount. We immediately provided appropriate care, counseling and support to the service member. Task Force-Bliss is also implementing additional security measures to include increased health and safety patrols, additional lighting, and enforcement of the buddy system at the Dona Ana Complex. We will cooperate fully with the FBI and will continue to ensure the service member reporting this assault is fully supported.”

In late August and early September, the U.S. government essentially built a village on the sprawling base just north of El Paso, housing upwards of 10,000 refugees from the fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban.

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