Over the past several months Rehana Popal and James Fraczyk have been representing numerous Afghan interpreters, and their families, whose entry clearance applications have been refused on national security grounds (after the interpreters and their families had already satisfied the eligibility criteria under the Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (‘ARAP’).
These cases arose, of course, as a consequence of the Taliban’s seizure of control over Afghanistan. The risks posed to the interpreters and their families are obvious, given the assistance the interpreters have provided to British and American forces, including in high-stress, combat-related environments.
After judicially reviewing the Home Secretary, various decisions have been reversed and others are currently being reconsidered.
The cases involve a range of complex legal and factual issues, including the applicability of the ECHR, standards of common law fairness in decision-making, and the closed material procedure under the Justice and Security Act 2013.