Information on whether the United States had specific legislation for protecting refugee claimants from El Salvador during the latter's armed conflict (ca. 1980-92), the rights it conferred to them, whether it was replaced, and whether the replacing legislation forced Salvadoreans to leave the United States [USA26349.E]

For information on the status of Salvadoreans in the United States during the Salvadorean armed conflict, please consult Responses to Information Requests 23519.E of 20 March 1996, USA22123.E of 31 October 1995, USA18386.E of 12 September 1994, USA11804 of 19 October 1992, and USA8796 of 14 June 1991. For additional information related to the rights of persons claiming asylum in the United States or under a special status such as the Temporary Protected Status mentioned in the previously-cited Responses, please consult Responses to Information Requests USA13748 of 1 April 1993, USA10216 of 7 February 1992, and USA8115 of 20 March 1991.

Additional information on legislation and court cases that affected the status of Salvadoreans in the United States can be found in the attached documents.

Further to the published information cited above and included with this Response, an officer at the Central America desk of the United States Department of State provided the information that follows during a 7 March 1997 telephone interview.

The Deferred Enforced Departure status (DED) that replaced the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Salvadoreans was extended to April 1996 from its original expiration date in January 1996. After that, the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (INS) issued notifications to all members of the class of aliens covered by the American Baptist Church (ABC) court settlement (mentioned in the previous Responses cited above), citing them for individual asylum interviews to determine their status. The source indicated that the interviews are scheduled to begin in April 1997, and will evaluate each case on its individual merits and according to United States law. A statement on the status of individual Salvadoreans in the United States, including the possibility of individual deportation, residence rights, acquisition of citizenship or other, cannot be inferred from these general provisions.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the DIRB within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


United States Department of State, Washington, DC. 7 March 1997. Telephone interview with Central America Desk officer.


Amnesty International. March 1990. Reasonable Fear: Human Rights and United States Refugee Policy. New York: Amnesty International USA, pp. 8-10.

World Refugee Report. July 1993. Washington, DC: Bureau for Refugee Programs, Department of State, pp. 207-13.

World Refugee Survey 1989—1988 in Review. 1989. Washington, DC: United States Committee for Refugees, pp. 83, 86-87.

World Refugee Survey 1988—1987 in Review. 1988. Washington, DC: United States Committee for Refugees, pp. 75-76.

World Refugee Survey 1986—1985 in Review. 1986. Washington, DC: United States Committee for Refugees, pp. 5-11.

World Refugee Survey 1983—1982 in Review. 1983. Washington, DC: United States Committee for Refugees, pp. 42-47.