New State Department data shows at least 37,000 Afghan refugees have been approved for resettlement in 46 states, according to Axios.
California and Texas are expected to receive the largest numbers of Afghan refugees, the outlet reported. California is projected to receive 5,255, while Texas expects 4,481.
Just four states were not included in the initial resettlement numbers. They included Hawaii, South Dakota, West Virginia and Wyoming.
Notably, Washington, D.C., was not listed as receiving any Afghan refugees.
— Axios (@axios) September 16, 2021
While the large numbers have concerned some Americans, the 37,000 refugees are only the first group of people who will be making their homes in America.
According to a report by CBS News, “As of Wednesday morning, there were more than 53,000 Afghan evacuees at eight military installations across the U.S. mainland that are serving as temporary housing sites while the new arrivals complete immigration paperwork, as well as vaccination against measles and COVID-19.”
The report noted that some of the Afghan refugees served the U.S. in Afghanistan or are related to someone who did. Those without citizenship, a green card or a Special Immigrant Visa will remain on military bases for now.
The State Department emphasized Americans have been very welcoming of the Aghan refugees. However, not everyone is happy about the new arrivals.
Oklahoma, the state listed as receiving the third-highest number of Afghan refugees with 1,800, offered mixed reviews in a report by local KFOR-TV on Thursday.
“We’ve vetted all the folks and we’re excited to welcome them,” Oklahoma Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt said.
“We’re excited to open up our arms … we’re excited to welcome them and show them the Oklahoma standard,” he added.
However, not everyone agreed with the move.
“I was on the ground in Afghanistan and there is no way that we can properly vet these people,” Oklahoma Republican Party Chairman John Bennett said. “If the government says otherwise, they are lying to you.”
Other states listed as receiving large numbers of Afghan refugees include Arizona with 1,600, Missouri with 1,200 and New York with 1,143, according to CBS.
Florida and Georgia are both expected to receive just over 1,000 Afghan refugees.
“It is the first wave of what White House officials have said will be 95,000 refugees in the first fiscal year,” Fox News reported.
“The intention is to bring in 65,000 immediately and another 30,000 over the next year, officials told reporters on a recent call.”