The FBI announced on Friday, Sept. 24 that it would look at the case of an alleged assault that targeted a female service member at an Afghan refugee camp in New Mexico.
The incident was reported from the Fort Bliss Afghan refugee housing complex in New Mexico, where a female U.S. soldier on Sept. 19 was attacked by a group of male Afghan refugees, Fox News reported.
“We take the allegation seriously and appropriately referred the matter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation,” officials at Fort Bliss confirmed to the news agency in a statement. “The safety and well-being of our service members, as well as all of those on our installations, is paramount.”
The statement said the military member received counseling and support. In addition, the task force at the base had installed more security measures after the attack, with more health and safety patrols, more illumination, and buddy system enforcement.
“We will cooperate fully with the FBI and will continue to ensure the service member reporting this assault is fully supported,” the statement acknowledged.
Not many details had been disclosed, but as sources told ABC-7, the attack had nothing to do with sexuality. Instead, the soldier was targeted around midnight as she appeared at the complex on duty. At least three Afghan men were involved.
The victim was injured, but the sources said she did not require hospitalization and was physically stable.
Fort Bliss is one of eight U.S. military bases where Afghan refugees were temporarily housed during their vetting process.
It’s not the first report concerning issues with the group of Afghan evacuees.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) charged two Afghan males stationed at Fort McCoy in Wisconsin with domestic assault and sexual abuse of a minor earlier this month, Fox News noted.
According to the department, 20-year-old Bahrullah Noori, an Afghan refugee, was found guilty of attempting a sexual act with a minor using force in addition to three other similar counts.
Meanwhile, Mohammad Haroon Imaad, 32, was accused of abusing his wife by choking and suffocating her.
Nearly a week after the Aug. 31 deadline of U.S. withdrawal, the Department of State requested guidance as they encountered cases of male Afghans arriving in the country with registered brides of significantly young age.
Several Afghan girls had also alleged they were in arranged marriages to escape Afghanistan. They also said they had been raped by their arranged spouse. However, details of the events had not been disclosed nor confirmed.
The evacuees are screened by the Department of Homeland Security, with some assistance from the Department of Defense, which is also sheltering evacuees at facilities across the world.
The evacuees are mainly vetted for potential ties with terrorists, as well as criminal profiles.
But Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin earlier this month admitted the process could not be impeccable.
“No process is ever perfect, and so if there’s a blip in the screen or there’s something that somehow gets through, I think the system will very quickly follow up to make sure that that’s addressed,” Austin said, per CBS News.