A female Fort Bliss soldier was assaulted on Sunday by a group of male Afghanistan evacuees at Fort Bliss's Doa Ana Range Complex in New Mexico, officials confirmed to American Military News. Fort Bliss public affairs director Lt. Col. Allie Payne told American Military News the soldier was supporting Operation Allies Welcome when she was assaulted. Payne also confirmed that the soldier sustained injuries. "We can confirm a female service member supporting Operation Allies Welcome reported being assaulted on Sept. 19 by a small group of male evacuees at the Doa Ana Complex in New Mexico," Payne confirmed in a statement. "We take the allegation seriously and appropriately referred the matter to the Federal Bureau of Investigation." The FBI is investigating the incident, but details regarding the extent of the assault or the soldier's injuries have not been released. read more
The U.S. on Friday halted U.S.-bound flights of Afghan evacuees, pulling some off planes, after discovering a few cases of measles among new arrivals in the United States. A U.S. government document viewed by The Associated Press warned the development would have a severe impact on an evacuation that since Aug. 15 has moved many thousands of people out of Taliban-held Afghanistan, but also been grindingly drawn out for Afghan evacuees and Americans alike, and was plagued by attacks and other deadly violence. The decision was made by U.S. Customs and Border Protection on the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the halt stemmed from discovery of measles among four Afghans who had arrived in the United States. It was not immediately clear from Psaki's remarks whether the stop applied to flights from all transit sites overseas, or only two of the biggest ones, in Qatar and in Germany.