Head of Refugee Resettlement Agency Says Revised Travel Ban Won't Bring Syrians to Bowling Green

Mar 9, 2017

The head of the Warren County-based Kentucky International Center says President Trump’s revised travel ban doesn’t bring him much optimism. 

Albert Mbanfu says he still doesn’t expect Bowling Green to receive 40 Syrian refugees this year.

"The fact that the administration still looks at Syrian refugees as being in the highest level of risk, the vetting will probably take like forever," Mbanfu told WKU Public Radio.

The original ban barred Syrian refugees from the U.S. indefinitely.  The revised order signed Monday no longer singles out displaced Syrians, but suspends the entire refugee program for four months to allow for a security review. 

Vetting of refugees normally takes 12 to 18 months.  Mbanfu says he fears if the federal government adds more layers to the process, it could be more than two years before Syrians are cleared to resettle in the U.S.

Mbanfu says he doesn’t expect them to resettle in Bowling Green for a few years, if at all.