Training Program for Afghan Pilots in US Ends After Nearly Half Go AWOL

3 May 2019
Military.com | By Richard Sisk

The military has shut down a training program for Afghan pilots and maintainers in the U.S. because of high desertion rates among the trainees, according to the office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR).

Desertions among members of the Afghan military training in the U.S., who often claim that they or their families have been threatened by the Taliban, have been a persistent problem for the U.S. military and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

In its quarterly report in October 2017, SIGAR said: “Given the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan and the fact that Afghan trainees who violate the terms of their visas suffer virtually no consequences for going AWOL (except for the possible return to Afghanistan), the AWOL rate is likely to either remain steady or increase.”

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Author: Dian Welle