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Afghan refugee in Nashville concerned for family left behind

Ezaz Noori
Posted at 6:36 PM, Sep 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-21 20:16:38-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — A translator for the U.S. Army shared concerns about his family and friends who didn't make it out of Afghanistan.

Ezaz Noori worked for the U.S. Army as a translator for nearly two decades in Afghanistan with special forces. He resettled in Nashville with his wife and kids in 2019. Now, he works at Amazon.

Noori said they’re the lucky ones. "I’m very worried about my family, and I also helped about 50 to 60 other people to get them a job with the U.S. special forces, they left behind there," he said.

He's already hearing about violence from the Taliban. "They killed one of my friends who was a coworker as well, they chopped his neck in front of his family and children," Noori said.

Noori said his uncle, who helped Americans, is in danger. "They told him, 'You have helped U.S. special operations, they killed us, now it’s our time, we do back the same thing to you,'" he said.

His uncle was released for a day from Taliban custody. He sent Noori a video and photo of his injuries. Now, he's back in Taliban custody, and his fate is unknown. "His wife and children are alone there’s nobody to take care of them," Noori said.

Trying to get people out was complicated. The world saw what happened at the airport in Kabul. Noori has been calling politicians trying to get family and friends help.

Through Catholic Charities and the Nashville International Center for Empowerment, hundreds of refugees are expected to settle in Music City. A person who works with refugees said the first one just arrived. You can donate here, and Catholic Charities has an Amazon wish list.

“There’s a lot of them they don’t speak English, to finding a job, and a way of life here in Nashville, that’s the toughest part I believe for them,” Noori said. "At the end of the day, if they move here, at least their life is safe, and they can look for a better life in the United States."

Seven hundred service members from Fort Campbell have deployed to help with refugees who are being vetted. They were sent to Fort Pickett, Fort Lee, and Fort McCoy for Operation Allies Welcome.