Under Trump, Iraqis who helped U.S. in war are stalled in refugee system

Only 153 Iraqi refugees whose applications were given high priority were admitted in the fiscal year that ended in September — down from a high of 9,829 in the 2014 fiscal year, according to government data obtained by The New York Times.

An estimated 110,000 Iraqis are waiting to be approved as refugees based on their wartime assistance. But on Friday, the Trump administration capped the number eligible this year at 4,000.

After the United States-led invasion of Iraq in 2003 that forced Saddam Hussein from power, thousands of Iraqis worked with American troops, diplomats and contractors, serving as translators and cultural advisers. Those Iraqis and their families were threatened, and in many cases attacked, by Sunni insurgents and Shiite militias who accused them of siding with Americans during the eight-year war.