SHROPSHIRE locals have spoken out about the situation of UK-funded Afghan special forces staff.

According to the BBC around 200 Afghan special forces staff, who were trained and funded by the UK, are currently facing deportation to their Taliban-controlled homeland after fleeing to Pakistan.

These soldiers have either been rejected by the Afghan Relocation and Assistance Programme or are still awaiting a decision after more than a year, meaning they will likely be returned to Afghanistan now that the government of Pakistan intends to expel all Afghan refugees.

The BBC said that  fears for the Afghan commandos come as it was revealed the government also rejected calls from senior British diplomatic and military figures to offer asylum to key Afghan civilian leaders whose lives were in danger.

The BBC obtained a private letter that was sent in March 2022 to the Foreign Office, which called for urgent help to be given to a group of 32 former governors, prosecutors and officials who worked with the UK and US in Helmand Province during operations between 2006 and 2014.

Much Wenlock-based former Royal Navy officer Grahame Hudson said: ‘Former PM Boris Johnson promised in 2021 that the UK would do whatever it can to get safe passage for these Afghan commandos. He acknowledged that their contribution had been incredibly important.’

‘As a former PM, shouldn’t he be picking up the phone to try to sort this - facing up to his responsibilities and honouring his commitment?’

Chris Naylor, South Shropshire’s Lib Dem Parliamentary Candidate said: "General Sir Richard Barron, who served in Afghanistan, condemns our failure to relocate these soldiers as a betrayal and a disgrace, and I completely agree. Our Special Forces colleagues deserve better.

"The Armed Forces Covenant must extend to foreign nationals who served with us, and we’re calling for a legal duty on Defence Secretary Grant Shapps to ensure the Covenant is upheld.

"I supported the Lib Dem's new Armed Forces Policy proposed by ex-serviceman Richard Foord MP, the Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Defence, at our recent Bournemouth Conference - particularly the call to strengthen the Armed Forces Covenant, our promise to treat the Armed Forces fairly and with respect."