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U.S. court deportations fall 43 percent over five years: report

(Reuters) - Deportations through U.S. immigration courts have fallen 43 percent in the past five years as the federal government brought fewer cases before those courts, according to Justice Department data analyzed by the New York Times on Wednesday. The figures come as President Barack Obama and House of Representatives Republicans clashed openly over immigration- reform legislation that remains stalled in the Republican-led House.

White House denies migrants deported for minor offenses

Washington, Apr 7 (EFE).- The U.S. administration denied Monday that the majority of the more than 2 million deportations since President Barack Obama took office in January 2009 have been of people who committed minor offenses, as The New York Times reported. Ninety-eight percent of deportations by Immigration and Customs Enforcement have been in line with the priorities set by the administration, with a focus on threats to national security, public safety and border security, White House spokesman Jay Carney said.

Obama blames Congress for deportations

US President Barack Obama on Thursday said he was powerless to stop mass expulsions of illegal immigrants, which prompted one Latino advocacy group to brand him "deporter in chief." The president said Congress was requiring him to enforce existing immigration laws while balking at passing a comprehensive bill that would offer illegal immigrants a path to citizenship. "I am constrained in terms of what I am able to do," Obama said. "The reason why these deportations are taking place is that Congress said 'you have to enforce these laws'"

Migrant fatally shot after throwing rocks at Border Patrol agent

San Diego, Feb 19 (EFE).- An undocumented immigrant who hurled rocks at a Border Patrol agent in a remote area east of San Diego was killed when the agent responded with gunfire. The incident occurred around 6:40 a.m. Tuesday in the mountainous Otay Mesa area some 3 miles from the border, when two agents intercepted a group of undocumented migrants who had crossed from Mexico into the United States. One member of the group threw a rock at the face of an agent, who, "fearing for his life," gunned the migrant down, the San Diego County Sheriff's Department said.

Number of undocumented immigrants arrested in the U.S. declines

Washington, Jan 27 (EFE).- The number of undocumented immigrants arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement dropped 23 percent nationwide between Sept. 30, 2012, and August 2013, though it increased in a half-dozen cities, according to Homeland Security figures. The monthly average of undocumented immigrants arrested shot up by 78 percent in Buffalo, New York. At the same time it rose in Philadelphia by 10 percent, in New Orleans by 7 percent, in Detroit by 6 percent, and in Saint Paul, Minnesota, by 5 percent.

Hispanic vote to be decisive in Arizona gubernatorial election

Phoenix, Jan 17 (EFE).- The Hispanic vote could be decisive in this year's elections in Arizona, where voters will choose a new governor, attorney general and superintendent of education. "The Hispanic vote will be of great importance, since it could help win an election," the Arizona director of Mi Familia Vota, Raquel Teran, told Efe. "All these offices are extremely important, they have an impact on the daily life of all Hispanics in Arizona," she said.

Activists celebrate gutting of Alabama immigration law

Activists claimed victory Wednesday after a plea deal reached in the southern US state of Alabama effectively stripped the harshest provisions from a state law restricting undocumented immigrants. Among its many provisions, the measure allowed police to demand the papers of individuals they thought might be undocumented during encounters as routine as traffic stops, often catching legal residents in the law's crosshairs.

Alabama, rights groups reach settlement on immigration law

By Verna Gates BIRMINGHAM, Alabama (Reuters) - The state of Alabama and a coalition of civil rights groups reached a settlement on Tuesday that discarded several important sections of the state's immigration law, widely considered the most stringent in the country. Under the deal to end lawsuits challenging the immigration law, which was outlined in agreements filed in U.S. federal court in Alabama, the state will not enforce several key provisions voided by federal courts.

Texas pols say Washington ignores border region's ills

Houston, Oct 28 (EFE).- Despite President Barack Obama's call on Congress to go forward with immigration reform, politicians in Texas say that Washington ignores the real problems facing border cities. One of those difficulties is local governments' lack of funds for dealing with the needs of the undocumented, former Texas state lawmaker Aaron Peña told Efe.

Thousands march in US for immigration reform

Thousands of people poured into streets across the United States on Saturday in a push to overhaul immigration and end the legal limbo of more than 11 million undocumented immigrants. The coast-to-coast activities saw about 3,000 demonstrators -- mostly Asian, Hispanic and Arab -- demonstrate in New York before marching over the landmark Brooklyn Bridge, as counterparts in California marched in Hollywood. In all, protesters marched in 160 US cities.
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