Afghan Voices

These quotes are taken from interviews by Dr. Sara de Jong, co-founder of the Sulha Alliance, in the context of her research on former Afghan LECs' claims to protection and rights. Please do not use without requesting permission.

“We live here with three guys and they know I'm screaming sometimes in my sleep. I often wake up suddenly. I think it has now been eight months that I’m not seeing anything in my sleep, that I’m a little normal. […] Even my friends believed in that time that I’ll commit suicide. I will kill myself. They tried to make me happy. That's all reality, no exaggeration.”

Afghan former LEC in the UK with refugee status

We did a lot of things for the British; without interpreters they couldn’t do anything, do you understand? The only thing that was different was the weapon, we wore the same uniform, same shoes, same socks, same underwear, only we didn’t have a weapon, they had a weapon. [...] The [Taliban] were always targeting interpreters. Because when they kill the interpreter, they know the army wouldn’t know what is going on, what they say in their language.”

Afghan former LEC with refugee status in the UK

“The first three months were the worst three months of my life when I came to the UK […]. Nobody showed anything to us, and all the time the caseworker was with me he was on the phone, talking to someone else. […] People from every other background in the world coming to this country, getting refugee status, or asylum, they are getting treated better than us, who have served this country for years, for ages.”

Afghan former LEC relocated to the UK under the ex-gratia scheme

“Whenever I apply for any job, they're saying ‘you don't have any qualification from this country, so we're not going to accept your application’. And that's why I ended up in a warehouse. And I'm the person who can speak six languages, but the talent, the skills, and the knowledge [is] all wasted up here.”

Afghan former LEC relocated to the UK under the ex-gratia scheme