Flight carrying Afghan children arrives in Chicago

A plane carrying Afghan children arrived in Chicago on Wednesday.

The plane had left from Qatar, the Department of Homeland Security said.

"We've been working with the federal HHS [Department of Health and Human Services] and they are taking responsibility for these children. They did arrive this morning. It was a small group of them.  said Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who indicated that she has been asked by the federal government not to offer too many details on the situation. "HHS will be responsible for them. We are a conduit because they arrived at O'Hare. This is something we've been planning for, for several weeks. We anticipated we would get planeloads before now."

The children on board were all traveling without a parent, legal guardian or other trusted adult. Some were picked up by family members or sponsors at the airport. Others will remain in the care of the Office of Refugee Resettlement while the unification process is completed.

There were reports that 75 children arrived in Chicago, but the Department of Homeland Security did not provide an exact number.

Lightfoot didn't say how many more refugees are coming, but did say the city has been ready for their arrival. 

The children all got their MMR vaccines before leaving for the United States and will be getting COVID and varicella vaccines here if eligible.