Obama calls child migrants urgent concern
President Barack Obama on Monday declared a wave of unaccompanied children across the U.S.-Mexican border an "urgent humanitarian situation" and directed federal agencies to coordinate a response to provide housing and other services. Officials said the response — which is being led by Federal Emergency Management Administrator Craig Fugate — will provide the children with medical treatment, food and mental health services. According to the Department of Health and Human Services' Administration for Children and Families, 24,668 unaccompanied minors were apprehended at the U.S.-Mexican border in fiscal 2013. In its new estimates, the government said as many as 60,000 children, mostly from Central America, could be caught this year trying to cross the Mexican border illegally, costing the United States more than $2.28 billion to house, feed and transport the children to shelters or reunite them with relatives already living in the United States. The new estimate is about $1.4 billion more than the government asked for in Obama's budget request sent to Congress this year.
President on trip to reassure allies
President Barack Obama on Monday began a weeklong trip to Poland, Belgium and France that he hopes will convince the world that the United States remains a bulwark defending democratic government at the same time it closes the book on more than a decade of war. The trip begins with a visit to Warsaw on the 25th anniversary of Poland's first democratic elections and concludes with events in Normandy marking the 70th anniversary of D-day.
Separatists attack border guards
As many as 500 pro-Russian insurgents assaulted a border command center in a key eastern Ukrainian city before dawn Monday, sparking a furious battle that raged throughout the day and into the night. The attack around Luhansk, near the border with Russia, was perhaps the largest and most coordinated assault on a government building in the nearly two months that separatists have waged their insurgency.
Court to review Ala. redistricting
The Supreme Court said Monday it will review Alabama's legislative reapportionment plan, accepting a challenge from the state's Democrats and African-American legislators that it was an attempt to limit minority effectiveness. The challengers said the state's ruling Republicans packed too many minority voters into too few districts — assuring minority representation in those districts but harming the chances for influence elsewhere.