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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Aug 2008
    PARADISE (San Diego)

    Liberians facing mass deportation from U.S.

    Liberians facing mass deportation from U.S.

    14,000 Liberians took advantage of U.S. temporary status during civil war

    Liberians have to return home when status exemption expires March 31
    Corvah Akoiwala: "My fear is, who am I going to leave my kids with?"

    Sen. Jack Reed pushing for extension to allow Liberians to stay

    By Eric Marrapodi and Chris Welch

    BROOKLYN CENTER, Minnesota (CNN) -- Thousands of Liberians living in the United States face deportation March 31 when a federal immigration status created for humanitarian purposes expires.

    Corvah Akoiwala is worried about what will happen to his children, born in the U.S., when he is sent to Liberia.

    1 of 2 In the 1990s, a bloody civil war raged through the West African nation, killing 250,000 people and displacing more than a million, according to a U.N. report. The United States extended "temporary protection status" to all Liberians who could get to America, and 14,000 of them took advantage of that humanitarian offer.

    Temporary protection status is an immigration status somewhere between political asylum and refugee status. Administered by the Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services, it is extended to nationals of countries facing civil unrest or natural disaster.

    For years, the temporary protection status for Liberians was extended as the situation there worsened under dictator Charles Taylor. But Taylor was ousted in 2003 and Ellen Johnson Sirleaf was elected Liberia's first female president in 2006. In 2007, citing the progress in Liberia, President George W. Bush signed an order of "delayed enforced departure" for Liberians who had been under temporary protection status, giving them 18 months to return to Liberia. Watch more on the uncertainty of Liberians living in U.S. »

    Corvah Akoiwala, a Liberian national who was fresh out of college when civil war broke out, remembers how it used to be there. "They dragged us from our homes, they were shooting all around us. They said they were going to have us killed," he said

    "On Tupero Road they had a killing field. Like every day they took someone to this field and they would just shoot them in front of everybody. It was just terrible," he said. He came to the United States in 1992 and settled in Rhode Island. A civil engineer by education, Akoiwala married and had three children, all of whom are American citizens.

    For the past 17 years he's worked, paid his taxes and contributed to his community. He and his wife were granted temporary protection status but now both face deportation. On March 31 they will go from being legal residents to illegal aliens.

    "My fear is, who am I going to leave my kids with?" he said. "Who am I going to leave them with? I want to stay here and see them grow up to be responsible citizens and then I can go back."

    The Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services said approximately 3,600 Liberian nationals are facing delayed enforced departure, but Liberian community leaders think the number may be twice that because, they said, many Liberians went underground and did not reregister with immigration services, knowing the delayed enforced departure status meant leaving the country.

    Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, about an hour north of Minneapolis, has a thriving Liberian community. Many now worry about losing their jobs, homes and businesses.

    Seyondi Roberts, a hairdresser, said 65 percent of her customers are Liberians facing delayed enforced departure.

    "We're praying that they don't send them back. But if they do, it will have a serious effect on the business. I do mainly African hair, so it's going to have a real big, big impact on the business," she said.

    Aba Hamilton Dolo also lives in the Brooklyn Center area and is slated for departure. She said she has nightmares and panic attacks at the prospect of being separated from her two young American-born children. "Please consider what would happen to our families if we were sent home," she begs.

    "Many of these Liberians have become important parts of the communities where they live in the United States," said Sen. Jack Reed, D-Rhode Island. There is a large Liberian community in his home state.

    "They have children who are citizens of the U.S.," he noted. "How do you leave children behind who are eligible to stay? They've worked very hard, they've played by the rules, and they've paid their taxes. They're here legally. I think that should be considered at least to let them stay."

    Reed has been one of the driving forces for extension of the temporary protection status in previous years and is pushing hard again this year for another extension. In addition, he wants a change in the rule that prohibits those on the temporary protection status classification from applying for citizenship.

    "They should have the right to become American citizens," he said. "They should be part of immigration reform. We shouldn't pick and choose different immigrant groups."

    Critics say Liberians should go back to Liberia when their status runs out.

    "It is time for people to go back and rebuild their country," said Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform. Stein underlines the temporary in "temporary protected status." He said for Liberians to stay when their country is at peace would be an abuse of U.S. hospitality.

    "It makes a mockery of the concept of short-term temporary humanitarian protection."

    Department of Homeland Security deputy spokesman Sean Smith said its Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency is "consulting with the White House and the State Department to determine the most appropriate course of action" in regard to the Liberians ... index.html

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  2. #2
    Senior Member legalatina's Avatar
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    Sep 2007
    You don't leave your minor children with anyone...take them back with you and they can always decide to come back to the U.S. when they are adults...since they are citizens.

    Otherwise....TPS expires that means it's time to go back home....ASAP. The welcome mat is worn out.;

  3. #3
    Senior Member alamb's Avatar
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    Feb 2008
    If those Liberians are sent home then so too should the Latin Americans in our country, yes the so-called Hispanics illegally here. Ouch not very politically correct, ouch. Apologies to all those bleeding hearts.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Captainron's Avatar
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    May 2007
    I wouldn't be surprised if the Obama family has a distant relative in that group, too.
    "Men of low degree are vanity, Men of high degree are a lie. " David
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  5. #5
    Senior Member grandmasmad's Avatar
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    Jul 2007
    Henderson, NV.. formally of So Calif
    You take your kids with you....what kind of parent would you be if you left them?????????????????????????????????????????????? ??????????
    The difference between an immigrant and an illegal alien is the equivalent of the difference between a burglar and a houseguest. Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

  6. #6
    Senior Member SOSADFORUS's Avatar
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    Jan 2007
    The same old tired excuses!! I have children here.....CHANGE THE 14th DAMN AMENDMENT!!!
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  7. #7
    Paidmytaxes's Avatar
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    Jan 1970
    Change the damn law is right!!!!

    It's not our problem. These people knew what they we're doing. And decided to play the pity me role.

    They shouldn't have had kids in the first place if they were not citizens themselves.

  8. #8
    gemini282's Avatar
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    Jan 1970
    Quote Originally Posted by Paidmytaxes
    Change the damn law is right!!!!

    It's not our problem. These people knew what they we're doing. And decided to play the pity me role.

    They shouldn't have had kids in the first place if they were not citizens themselves.
    They are so ungrateful for what American taypayers have given them. Free healthcare, prenatal care, their babies born in our hospitals ( I just had a baby and had to share a room due to over crowding here in southern california with someone who couldn't speak english and was on welfare and WIC and had the nerve to ask for free formula from the hospital but then it's their sense of entitlement), things their country would never give. How do you have a kid in a country not your own and expect them to pay for that kid or kids. I could never do it, I have too much self respect and I do things for myself, it's all about personal responsibility to which they obviously have none.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Paige's Avatar
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    Nov 2005
    Salt Lake City Utah
    Canada changed there law. Why can't we?
    <div>''Life's's even tougher if you're stupid.''
    -- John Wayne</div>

  10. #10
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    Aug 2005
    Quote Originally Posted by Paige
    Canada changed there law. Why can't we?
    Did they? Good for Canada. Wake Up America. This is NOT what the 14th Amendment was passed to achieve. The 14th Amendment was passed to protect the children of slaves and make them citizens, not the children of illegal aliens, not the children of legal immigrants here on temporary work visas, not the children of those here on temporary asylum protection orders, not the children of tourists or students here on tourist or student visas.

    Give me a break! Get these people out of here with their kids whether they were born here or not.
    A Nation Without Borders Is Not A Nation - Ronald Reagan
    Save America, Deport Congress! - Judy

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