The first group of Afghan refugees bound for Camp Atterbury in southern Indiana arrived in the state Thursday.
A plane carrying the refugees landed Thursday afternoon at Indianapolis International Airport. The refugees were processed and then boarded buses for the drive to the base about 25 miles south of the capital.
The refugees were expected to arrive in groups of 1,000 at a time, and about 5,000 are expected in the coming weeks, officials said this week. The refugees include American citizens, Afghan allies who helped in the military effort and those deemed vulnerable Afghans by the U.S. government.
Gov. Eric Holcomb said Camp Atterbury will house the refugees until they are placed in more permanent housing.
“As Hoosiers, we are proud to do our part and provide a temporary home for Afghan evacuees who have supported this nation,” Holcomb said Wednesday.
Active duty and National Guard service members at Camp Atterbury will provide housing, medical needs, logistics and transportation.
The refugees are subject to a 14-day quarantine at Camp Atterbury to determine their medical and visa statuses. Nongovernmental agencies will aim to resettle them within 10 weeks, Indiana National Guard Adjutant Gen. R. Dale Lyles said.