A plan announced by the US Department of Homeland Security in October to grant temporary protected status to Ethiopians temporarily inside the United States due to war in their homeland is expected to take effect from Monday.
“The United States recognizes the ongoing armed conflict and the extraordinary and temporary conditions in Ethiopia, and DHS is committed to providing temporary protection to those in need,” the Secretary of Homeland Security said. , Alejandro Mayorkas, when announcing the plan.
Temporary Protected Status, or TPS, is often granted to people temporarily visiting the United States, including students, business people and tourists, who fear returning home to countries affected by conflict or natural disasters.
They can stay in the United States, even with expired visas, as long as the TPS order is in place.
Mayorkas’ order allows Ethiopians without permanent residency or citizenship to stay in the United States for up to 18 months. TPS status can be renewed, depending on the circumstances of the country of origin.
To be eligible for TPS under the Ethiopian designation, individuals must demonstrate continuous residence in the United States since October 20, 2022 and continuous physical presence in the United States since December 12, 2022, according to DHS. Persons arriving in the United States after October 20, 2022 are not eligible for TPS under this designation.
DHS said about 26,700 Ethiopians in the United States are eligible to file TPS claims.
According to the US Census, about 272,000 people in the United States came from Ethiopia.
The TPS plan is set to come into force even as basic services like electricity and telecommunications have been restored in key parts of Ethiopia’s Tigray region after a ceasefire agreement was signed -fire a month ago, ending hostilities in nearly two years of war, but most regions are still cut off from the world.
Information for this story comes from Agence France-Presse and The Associated Press.