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A Breather for Liberians in the US as Obama Extends “Deferred Enforcement Departure”

Liberians in the U.S. under “deferred enforced departure status” (DED) got a temporary reprieve of another 18 months by orders of President Barack Obama this morning.

In a memorandum issued today, the president directed the Department of Homeland Security to extend the status by another year and a half.

Liberians fled their country after civil war erupted there in 1989 and have gone through the annual ritual of exhorting whoever the occupier of the white House is for a DED extension.

In February, 13 senators, including Minnesota’s Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken, in a letter to president Obama highlighted the instability that still exists in Liberia and called on the president to extend DED for Liberians here.

Besides New York, Rhode Island and the two Carolinas, her state of Minnesota also boasts the largest number of Liberians in the United States.

On president Obama’s action to extend DED, Senator Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota said “Granting Liberians extended DED status is the right decision. The Liberian Community has become an important part of the social fabric of Minnesota – they are our neighbors and our co-workers,” adding that “While we continue to pursue a permanent solution, it is important that Liberians who are here legally can continue to call Minnesota home.”

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