Last year, 941 new international parental kidnapping cases were reported to the Office of Children’s Issues at the U.S. State Department, which tracks abductions and helps inform parents about how to retrieve their children.

These international abduction cases have become more common in recent years. There were 43 percent more cases in 2009 than in 2007, though the numbers have dropped slightly since then. Mexico has remained the destination country in about one-third of all cases. But these numbers only offer a snapshot of the problem—experts say many cases go unreported to both agencies.

Although there are international legal means to address abductions, there’s still not a timely or foolproof solution for the “left-behind” parents, as U.S. government officials call them, to retrieve their children. Most parents don’t know where to seek help, and many law enforcement agencies don’t know how to—or choose not to—help them.

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ICE Officers: Deferred Action for DREAMers Unconstitutional

Just as undocumented immigrants across the country celebrated a historic victory granting them temporary relief from deportation, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers, seven of them from Texas, were preparing to challenge that possibility. The ICE employees filed a lawsuit today against Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano and ICE Director John Morton claiming the recent Obama policy is forcing them to violate the law.

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Before the DREAM, Plenty of Paperwork

A coalition of DREAM Act students and allies encouraged eligible undocumented immigrants to apply for relief from deportation and for temporary work permits Wednesday in Austin. The group, called the University Leadership Initiative, also sounded a warning to protect immigrants from being ripped off by predatory lawyers.

It was part of a national Day of Action spearheaded by United We Dream, a network of youth-led immigrant organizations. The groups celebrated U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ release of the long-awaited Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals applications two months after the Obama administration announced the policy.

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Undocumented Immigrants Come Out of the Shadows, Take to the Road

Tired of government inaction and what they call “political football” in immigration reform, a busload of undocumented immigrants are risking arrest and deportation to push for change. About 30 undocumented immigrants and their supporters boarded what they’ve dubbed the “Undocubus” Wednesday and rolled out of Phoenix, widely regarded as a battleground for immigrant rights. The Undocubus will pull into the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina in September.

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