On Thursday, the US homeland security department announced that around 500 Somalians will be allowed in the US until March of 2020, despite Trump’s anti-immigration policies. These Somalis have escaped the drought and terrorism going on in their home country.
Among Trump’s efforts to end immigration, the temporary protected status (TPS) program has yet to be abolished. The decision to extend TPS comes from the severe conditions back in Somalia.
The DHS Office of Public Affairs issued the following statement:
“After carefully reviewing conditions in Somalia with interagency partners, Secretary [Kirstjen] Nielsen determined the ongoing armed conflict and extraordinary and temporary conditions that support Somalia’s current designation for TPS continue to exist. Therefore, pursuant to the statue, she has extended Somalia’s TPS designation for 18 months.”
Since Congress came up with TPS in 1990, some 300,000 people have participated in the program. Other countries have been issued an 18-month extension including Syria, South Sudan, and Yemen.
In an interview with The Guardian, Somalia native Yasir, 29, explained his incredible experience and his thoughts on TPS.
“I’ve seen countries losing TPS and I’ve been scared I’m going to lose mine and be deported back home,” said Yasir.
While walking down the street in Somalia, two men approached Yasir and struck him unconscious. When he woke up, he was in a room with two al-Shabaab members. The men tried to convince him to join their forces.
“They told me if I don’t work with them, they will kill me and they know where I live,” Yasir explained in his interview.
The militant group al-Shabaab has been active since 2006 and has terrorized the country since. Yasir said that he is “scared of going back to Somalia and being killed by al-Shabaab”. For many Somalians, the United States has been a safe haven.
“I was happy to be alive. I was happy to be somewhere where justice means something.” (Yasir)
Other refugees are being forced out of the US including Nicaragua, El Salvador, and Sudan. This amounts to more than 428,250 people.
Featured Image via Wikipedia