A MILITARY camp in South Wales is about to be used to accommodate Afghan families fleeing the Taliban.

Up to 180 people are set to be housed in East Camp at MOD St Athan, Vale of Glamorgan.

The camp has capacity to accommodate 200 people.

The first cohort of families fleeing the Taliban will consist of 50 people, half of them said to be children.

The journey is described as a one-way ticket, with the families unlikely to return to Afghanistan.

They are arriving to the UK via Pakistan where they were recently sheltering from the Taliban.

Those eligible for the scheme - Afghan Relocations and Assistance Policy (ARAP) – are said to have supported British Forces during their occupations in Afghanistan in various roles including interpreters.

Colonel Sion Walker, Deputy Commander of 160th (Welsh) Brigade, and communications advisor Lieutenant Colonel Patrick Jackson held a press briefing on March 27 explaining more on the scheme.

When they first arrive in the UK, Afghan families will be accommodated in a "Reception Staging and Onward Movement" (RSOM) site before moving onto further transitional or settled accommodation which is likely to be in other parts of the UK.

Barry And District News: Around 50 people will arrive in the first cohortAround 50 people will arrive in the first cohort (Image: Newsquest)

East Camp at MOD St Athan was being used to train RAF tech students. Negotiations with the Welsh Government has led to the MOD extending the lease until Christmas.

St Athan is the first site to be activated in Wales. The MOD say it has worked closely with the Welsh Government and Vale Council to ensure the approach to the project is managed with everybody in mind, especially those who live locally in the St Athan and South Wales area.

Afghan families will have access to healthcare when they arrive, and work is underway to ensure children have access to education.

Eligible Afghans will be housed there temporarily for approximately six weeks before moving to more settled accommodation.

The families will be allowed to come and go from the camp as they please.

Barry And District News: The fleeing Afghans supported British troops overseasThe fleeing Afghans supported British troops overseas (Image: Newsquest)

The MOD highlighted the support these people had given to British military forces.

An MOD spokesperson said: “We owe a debt of gratitude to those brave Afghans who risked their lives working alongside our forces in support of the UK mission.”

At the briefing, Lt Jackson further emphasised the importance of these people’s actions while the British forces were in Afghanistan.

“We could not do what we were doing without them,” said Lt Jackson. “When the withdrawal happened it was integral for us to try protect them.”