Trump might force thousands to return to danger in Syria. More than 50 experts say that’s a terrible idea.

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More than 50 national security and foreign policy experts have signed a letter asking Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and Secretary Rex Tillerson to extend and re-designate temporary protected status (TPS) for Syria. TPS allows Syrians already in the United States to continue to legally live and work as members of our community.

Highlighting the on-going violence in Syria, signatories to this letter make the case that TPS is not only a humanitarian obligation; it is in America’s national security interest.

In recent months, the Trump administration has ended TPS for more than 250,000 people from El Salvador, Haiti, Nicaragua and Sudan, which will tear apart families and devastate American communities. This letter aims at protecting Syrians currently living and working legally in the United States from being forced to return to the war-torn country, a fate that is tantamount to a death sentence. These experts echo many of the same concerns raised by humanitarian groups operating in Syria but also make the case that not extending TPS will undermine the stated goals of the Trump Administration’s new approach to the conflict in Syria.

You can learn more about the valuable contributions of TPS holders to the United States here and see a state-by-state break down here.

Read the letter below.

Updated 7:09 p.m. on January 26, 2018.

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