The Trump administration announced on March 27, 2018 that it will end Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Liberians. TPS is granted to certain groups of people in the wake of natural disasters, wars, outbreaks of disease, and other catastrophes that would make it difficult for them to return safely to their home countries. Government officials periodically review the program to decide whether to extend it, and most groups have received regular extensions in the past. TPS was granted to Liberian nationals in 1999 when President Bill Clinton established it in response to the conditions in the country after a civil war. Some 4000 Liberian nationals are living in the United States under TPS now and have been for the last 25 years.
Advocates for Liberians in the United States have urged the government to simply extend the protections as it has recently done for Syria. Advocates have argued that these individuals have been in the state for decades, have become important parts of communities, and have children that were born in the country. In the memorandum issued on Tuesday, trump stated that Liberia is no longer experiencing armed conflict and has made significant progress in restoring stability and democratic governance. Trump has given a 12 months transition time for the Liberians living in the United States to “get their affairs in order before returning to Liberia”.
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