Homeland Security extends protection for Myanmar refugees | WORLD
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Homeland Security extends protection for Myanmar refugees

Refugees from Myanmar arriving in Indonesia Associated Press/Photo by Rahmat Mirza

Homeland Security extends protection for Myanmar refugees

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas expanded and extended the Temporary Protected Status of Myanmar refugees in the United States on Friday, citing safety concerns for returning nationals. The decision allows about 2,300 refugees currently under TPS to apply for continued legal residence through Nov. 25, 2025. Authorities estimate another 7,300 nationals are also eligible to apply for TPS recognition if they are already living in the United States. The department also rolled out a relief notice for “nonimmigrant students whose country of citizenship is Burma [Myanmar],” allowing students to request employment authorization and course load reductions while continuing to stay in the United States.

What are the safety concerns? The U.S. government has given Myanmar TPS status since a military coup overthrew the South Asian country’s democratic government in 2021. The ruling junta’s subsequent brutality prompted Secretary of State Antony Blinken to make a declaration of genocide for Myanmar the following year. Homeland Security’s extension of protection on Friday cited “challenges in the provision of food, access to health care, and economic stability” in the country, along with “further widespread violence.”

Dig deeper: Read Sharon Dierberger and Joyce Wu’s report reflecting on the junta’s three years in power.

Christina Grube

Christina Grube is a graduate of the World Journalism Institute.

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