30 December 2013
BRITISH GOVERNMENT FIGURES show there were 28 cases in the past year involving children who were abducted from a parent or guardian in the UK and taken to Ireland.
Total figures for parental child abduction and international custody cases have been revealed by authorities in Britain as they seek to raise awareness of the problem ahead of an expected spike in cases after Christmas.
They relate to cases whereby a child was taken out of the UK against the stipulation of a court order or against the will of one parent.
The number of cases involving the Foreign Office has more than doubled in the last decade, from 272 in 2003-2004 to 580 in the past year. Cases involving children taken to Ireland accounted for the fourth largest number of such incidents; Pakistan accounted for 35 cases, followed by the US (32) and Poland (29).
Contrary to the belief that fathers are most often to blame, mothers are responsible for 70 percent of the abductions, the Foreign Office said. Charities involved in child abduction said there was a spike in cases just after Christmas last year, and again in September following the summer holidays.
Figures from the Department of Justice here show there were 83 cases of suspected abduction in in 2012 relating to attempts to bring children out of the country. The Department also dealt with 64 cases involving children entering the state.
Speaking earlier this year upon the release of the Irish figures, Justice Minister Alan Shatter said that parental-child abductions remained a “worrying problem”.
The UK Foreign Office has produced this video aimed at encouraging parents to consider the consequences of taking a child out of the country without permission…
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