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From Texas Standard:

As we've seen since 9/11, partnerships to strengthen national security can sometimes make for interesting bedfellows. One case in point is a collaboration between the Department of Homeland Security and Texas A&M's AgriLife Extension Service. Under the 10-year project, the institutions will launch a new Center for Excellence in cross-border threat screening and supply-chain defense. The project has nearly $4 million in funding for its first year.  

Reynaldo Leal for The Texas Tribune

BROWNSVILLE — It took four months of detention, a $13,000 bond, pressure from a U.S. congressman’s office and a network of attorneys to finally reunite Angela with her 16-year-old daughter on Friday. The Central American mother and child were separated at the border in May under the Trump administration's since-overturned “zero tolerance” policy.

Yet they're among the lucky ones.

Photo by Spencer Selvidge

Editor's note: this story has been updated throughout

A U.S. Border Patrol agent has been accused of going on a nearly two-week-long “serial killing spree” that came to an end on Saturday after he was arrested him in connection with the deaths of four women and the kidnapping of a fifth woman.

Mike Blake / Reuters

The immigration detention center at Tornillo used to hold undocumented immigrant minors will remain open through the end of the year, a government spokesperson said Tuesday.

Updated at 3:40 p.m. ET

A federal appeals court says a lawsuit over the cross-border killing of a Mexican teenager by a Border Patrol agent can proceed, saying that if the plaintiff's version of events is correct, the agent "violated a clearly established constitutional right and is thus not immune from suit."

The busiest section of the U.S.-Mexico border is the Rio Grande Valley. It's not unusual for Border Patrol agents to catch more than 500 immigrants a day trying to cross into the U.S. along this 55-mile stretch. In spite of increased border security and rising costs to cross, migrants are still determined to make the journey.

NPR recently spent time on both sides of the border, where immigration is part of everyday life.

In America today, communities are sorting themselves into like-minded bubbles. There are red teams and blue teams, where you're less likely to run into people who disagree with you.

Lately, immigration has been a flashpoint for debate.

But in the border town of McAllen, Texas, it's a part of everyday life.

Carlos Garcia is an immigration lawyer. Ben Wilson is a border patrol agent. Garcia fights to keep people in the country — some of the same people Wilson might arrest.

Callie Richmond for The Texas Tribune

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department has warned U.S. Border Patrol that it could be forced to shutter a beloved state park on the southern tip of the state if President Donald Trump builds his border wall through it as proposed. The state parks department also is urging the agency to consider less impactful alternatives to a wall within the park.

Elena Santizo sat by the departure gate in El Paso, Texas on Friday with a rosary around her neck, waiting nervously to board a plane for the first time in her life. Simply riding the escalator up to airport security gave the 39-year-old mother the jitters. She opted for the stairs instead.

"To tell my story is difficult," she said. "Everything I've lived through, so much, ever since I left Guatemala."

Updated at 9:05 p.m. ET

The federal judge who ordered the reunification of thousands of migrant families says the Trump administration deserves "great credit" for its efforts.

But Judge Dana Sabraw also faulted the administration for "losing" hundreds of parents, leaving a significant number of families separated a day after the court-imposed deadline to reunite them.

Gregory Bull / AP

Shy children were given a meal and a plane or bus ticket to locations around the U.S. as nonprofit groups tried to smooth the way for kids reunited with their parents following their separations at the U.S. Mexico border.

Reynaldo Leal / The Texas Tribune

Hundreds of kids are still separated from their migrant parents, despite Thursday's deadline for the Trump administration to reunite families.

Investigative reporter Neena Satija has been following one of those families — Marcos, Sandy and their four children — for the Texas Tribune and Reveal. Satija talked with KERA about what she learned while reporting the story. 

Texas Tribune

A young Guatemalan slept on a bridge for at least three days and nights while attempting to seek asylum. His wife and children had been separated after crossing that bridge just weeks earlier. This is the story of a family that faced seemingly every possible hurdle under Trump's immigration crackdown.

Eric Gay / AP

As the government faces a deadline to reunite hundreds of families, it is shifting the responsibility of their well-being to faith-based groups primarily in Texas and Arizona.

More than 450 migrant parents who were separated from their children at the border are no longer in the United States — but the government can’t be sure how many of them were deported and how many may have “voluntarily” left because of confusion over how those individuals were “coded,” Sarah Fabian, a lawyer for the U.S. Department of Justice, said Tuesday at a court conference in San Diego.

Julián Aguilar/The Texas Tribune

More than three dozen environmental, faith-based and immigrant rights groups are urging the federal government to extend the public-comment period for construction of the border wall, arguing that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security isn’t acting in good faith.

Rotten sandwich meat that’s turned green or black; noodle soup cooked so little that the noodles are still hard; drinking water that smells like chlorine, Clorox or “just bad.” Cramped, cold conditions; tearful separations of children and mothers; guards who said Mexicans won’t ever receive asylum in the United States.

Bebeto Matthews / Associated Press

An immigrant father from Guatemala dotes over his despondent teenage daughter during a weekly 10-minute phone call, while other parents wait weeks for the phone to ring.

A mother in Louisiana has phone video chats with her detained 5-year-old son in Texas, while a Honduran asylum-seeker had actual face time with his little girl, visiting her in person. He made sure to bring along a McDonald's hamburger to share.

Since his inauguration, President Donald Trump has kept his campaign promises of tougher immigration policies, leading to a constant flow of policy changes — from scaling back on programs like Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals to his “zero-tolerance” policy along the border that’s led to separation of parents and children attempting to cross into the U.S.

All of these individual actions amount to a broader strategy that is now becoming clear.

Hundreds of Episcopal Church leaders from around the country protested the Trump administration’s “zero-tolerance” immigration policy outside a detention center in Taylor on Sunday.

In response to a federal court order, the Trump administration announced a new policy with regard to migrant families on Friday. The administration will now hold families together for longer than 20 days.

The Department of Defense plans to start building tent encampments on two military bases in Texas to house migrant families apprehended at the border. Construction is expected to begin after the July 4 holiday.

The Pentagon said in a statement that the Department of Homeland Security asked the Defense Department to house and care for an "alien family population" of up to 12,000 people.

At a highway-side motel in Harlingen, near the border in Texas, a small meeting room has been turned into something of a war room. Volunteer lawyers and aid workers eat tacos and strategize about how to help detained immigrants.

"It's almost triage, that's what it feels like," says Natasha Quiroga, who flew in from Washington, D.C. with the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law.

A federal judge in San Diego has barred the separation of migrant children and ordered that those currently detained under the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy be reunited with families within 30 days.

A Honduran father caught crossing the border illegally with his daughter was released from custody with an ankle monitor in El Paso, Texas, on Monday — the same day his daughter turned 10 years old in a government-run shelter.

The father and daughter have been separated for the month he was in Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention, and she was in a shelter run by the Department of Health and Human Services. He said he called a 1-800 number that HHS set up to get an update on his daughter.

Updated at 1:42 p.m. ET

Despite pressure from President Trump for the U.S. to arrest and prosecute anyone caught crossing the border illegally, U.S. Customs and Border Protection says its agents will temporarily suspend the practice of detaining adults who arrive with children — something that had been a tenet of Trump's "zero tolerance" policy.

The U.S. says it has reunited more than 500 migrant children that the government separated from their parents. That means there are about 2,000 children to go. Officials say they have a plan, though parents and their advocates tell a different story.

On Sunday, a Department of Homeland Security bus pulled up outside Annunciation House, a shelter for migrants and refugees in El Paso, Texas. Parents filed off and walked into the shelter. Some wore their pant legs rolled up, exposing GPS ankle monitors.

Courtesy of Alia Salem

A group of North Texas activists traveled to McAllen, Texas, over the weekend to protest the separation of immigrant parents from their children – many of whom are being held in detention centers.

The Trump administration has released its plan for reuniting children who have been separated from their parents as a result of the president's "zero tolerance" immigration policy, but in a fact sheet issued on Saturday, it provided no timeline for when those reunifications will happen.

Detained Migrants Say They Were Told They Could Get Kids Back On Way Out Of U.S.

Jun 24, 2018
U.S. Customs and Border Protection via Texas Tribune

HOUSTON — Central American men separated from their children and held in a detention facility outside Houston are being told they can reunite with their kids at the airport if they agree to sign a voluntary deportation order now, according to one migrant at the facility and two immigration attorneys who have spoken to detainees there.

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