United States of America Department of State

General information about the resource:

Type of Resoure: Data / Fact Sheet
Topics covered: Child Abduction
Language: English

What is it about?

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REPORT ON COMPLIANCE WITH
THE HAGUE CONVENTION ON THE CIVIL ASPECTS OF
INTERNATIONAL CHILD ABDUCTION
APRIL 2021
SUBMITTED PURSUANT TO
THE SEAN AND DAVID GOLDMAN
INTERNATIONAL CHILD ABDUCTION
PREVENTION AND RETURN ACT OF 2014
22 U.S.C. §9111, ET SEQ.

Dear Reader,
The Department of State takes seriously our responsibility to lead U.S efforts to resolve and prevent cases of international parental child abduction, both as a means of protecting children – our most vulnerable citizens – as well as meeting our international treaty obligations under the Hague Convention of 25 October 1980 on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (the Convention). Within the Department, the Office of Children’s Issues in the Bureau of Consular Affairs serves as the U.S. Central Authority for the Convention. The Office’s dedicated staff works closely with other offices in the Department, our interagency partners, foreign counterparts, and other stakeholders in pursuit of our common goals of preventing and resolving cases of international parental child abduction.
We strongly believe that the Convention, when properly implemented, provides a critical legal mechanism for resolving cases of international parental child abduction. The Convention operates on a straightforward premise: that a child involved in an international parental abduction should generally be returned promptly to his or her country of habitual residence, where a competent authority is best able to decide custody matters. Working with our Embassies and Consulates overseas, we actively engage with foreign governments to encourage them to join the Convention, and then to fulfill their treaty obligations. In 2020, we welcomed Pakistan as a new treaty partner, and began ongoing discussions with Pakistan’s Central Authority about both preventing and resolving international child abductions between our countries. Unfortunately, there are countries that are reluctant to join the Convention and others which, although treaty partners, fail to live up to their commitments for various reasons. While we seek to support and assist these countries in meeting their treaty obligations through technical assistance, training, and information sharing, we also hold them accountable, as evidenced in this report.
The COVID-19 global pandemic made our efforts uniquely challenging. Every country included in this report and every family with an abduction or access case experienced the effects of this pandemic and the measures imposed by countries to
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prevent its spread. Parents risking their health to travel overseas for court proceedings or access to their children often faced not only health risks but also unavoidable administrative delays, court closures, cancelled flights, travel restrictions, and quarantine requirements upon arrival. Many countries’ central authorities made the transition from in-person to virtual work, often finding innovative ways to carry on this important work on behalf of children. Court hearings sometimes took place virtually rather than in-person. We used virtual platforms to meet with foreign Central Authorities to work through challenges and cases. Our evaluation of country performance, including our citation of countries for patterns of noncompliance, uses the standards defined in the Sean and David Goldman International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act of 2014 (the Act), and seeks to separate the wide-ranging impacts of COVID-19 from that country’s performance measures. Despite continued progress, during 2020 some countries demonstrated a pattern of noncompliance as defined in the Act. This report cites 11 such countries.
We owe it to the families involved to strengthen our efforts to resolve and prevent international parental child abduction. I am committed, as are my colleagues in the Office of Children’s Issues and Embassies and Consulates around the world, to encouraging these countries to take more effective measures to resolve cases of international parental child abduction and, in the cases of treaty partners, to live up to their legal obligations. I trust that this report will be a valuable resource for Congress, parents, attorneys, judges, and law enforcement officers.
Sincerely,

Antony J. Blinken
Secretary of State


Annual Report on

International Child Abduction

2021

REPORT ON COMPLIANCE WITH

TABLE OF CONTENTS

MESSAGE FROM THE SECRETARY OF STATE INTRODUCTION

The State Department’s Role in International Parental Child Abduction

Cases………………………………………………………………………………..

Preventing International Parental Child Abduction ………………………………………….7

Cooperation with Law Enforcement………………………………………………………………9

Diplomatic Efforts to Combat International Parental Child Abduction………………10

Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction…………15

The Role of the State Department in Non-Convention Cases …………………………..18

Assistance to U.S. Military Personnel and Their Families ……………………………….18

Children Returned to the United States and Other Resolutions ………………………..19

Voluntary Agreements ……………………………………………………………………………20

The Role of Domestic Violence in IPCA …………………………………………………..20

Criminal Laws and Remedies ………………………………………………………………….21

Resources for U.S. Judges in the Application of the Convention …………………..21

Use of Airlines in Abductions ………………………………………………………………….22

How to Use This Report…………………………………………………………………………….22

Understanding the Country Pages ……………………………………………………………….23

COUNTRIES DEMONSTRATING A PATTERN OF NONCOMPLIANCE COUNTRIES WITH ONE OR MORE ABDUCTION CASES APPENDICES

The Department of State’s Role in International Parental Child Abduction (IPCA)

Cases

As the U.S. Central Authority for the Hague Convention of 25 October 1980 on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Convention), the Bureau of Consular Affairs’ Office of Children’s Issues leads U.S. government efforts to prevent abductions and to respond when international abductions happen. Country officers work with foreign governments, nongovernmental organizations, other

U.S. government agencies, and international organizations to resolve IPCA matters.  We also actively encourage countries to become party to the Convention, which is the best means of ensuring that countries establish procedures to address abduction cases.  Once the Convention is in force between the United States and another Convention party, also known as “partnership” under the Convention, we collaborate with foreign officials from that country to promote compliance with Convention obligations.

The Office of Children’s Issues also works with interagency partners to prevent

abductions before they occur. On a daily basis, officers inform parents of the

 Ch i ld ren ’s P assp o rt Issu an ce  Al ert  P rog ram (CP IAP )  , which is one of our strongest

tools to prevent IPCA. Additionally, officers regularly liaise with law enforcement officers and discuss best practices for identifying and responding to IPCA.

When parents report that their children have been abducted or retained outside of the United States (“outgoing abduction cases”), country officers inform them of potential options and provide resources to help them seek the return of, or access to, their children. In 2020, country officers responded to 157 initial inquiries in which parents sought information and resources regarding abductions, but did not proceed with providing complete documentation. Country officers handled 664

total outgoing abduction cases, including 246 cases opened in 2020. Also, in 2020,

129 cases were resolved with the return of 185 abducted children to the United

States, and an additional 72 cases were resolved in other ways.

If a parent files for return or access under the Convention, country officers forward the application to our counterparts in the foreign central authority (FCA) where the child is believed to be located. After confirming the location of the child, FCAs typically seek a voluntary resolution or offer to conduct mediation between the parents. If the parents cannot reach a voluntary agreement, then the case generally moves to the judicial phase during which a judge makes a decision about whether the child should return to the country of habitual residence.

When the Convention is not an option, such as when children are located in a country for which the Convention is not in force with respect to the United States, other options that may be available are  mediation, litigation in foreign courts, or the pursuit of criminal law remedies. These same alternatives are available even when the Convention is an option as the Convention is not an exclusive remedy. While the Office of Children’s Issues can provide a list of attorneys in the country where the child is located, country officers cannot act as a legal representative for either parent. Parents who use a foreign civil justice system will likely need to retain an attorney in the country where the child is located.

When a child returns to the United States as a result of a judicial order or volun tary

arrangement, the Office of Children’s Issues, U.S. embassies and consulates

around the world, and law enforcement colleagues work to facilitate the child’s safe and expeditious travel.  From issuing travel documents to providing contacts with consular staff and victim’s assistance specialists, country officers provide options and resources to facilitate safe return and reintegration.

Parents may also choose to resolve abductions or retentions through voluntary agreements or mediation.  Depending on the arrangements that parents make, sometimes children will return to the United States and other times they will remain overseas. The Office of Children’s Issues provides information and resources regarding mediation in IPCA matters, but it is not directly involved in mediating specific cases.

For IPCA cases in which children are removed to, or retained in, the United States (“incoming abduction cases”), the Office of Children’s Issues, serving as the U.S. Central Authority under the Convention, carries out the required functions of locating children, providing an option for voluntary resolution, facilitating access to mediation services when requested, and monitoring proceedings under the Convention.  In this capacity, the Office of Children’s Issues also educates U.S. judges, attorneys, and law enforcement officials on the United States’ obligations under the Convention.

Preventing International Parental Child Abduction

The Office of Children’s Issues has a dedicated prevention team which responds to inquiries from parents, the legal community, law enforcement, foreign governments, and other stakeholders about how to prevent international parental child abduction. We also assist in preventing third-country abductions transiting

through the United States. In 2020, the Office of Children’s Issues fielded over

4,200 prevention-related inquiries, a 22 percent decrease from 5,400 in 2019.

The Children’s Passport Issuance Alert Program (CPIAP) is one of the Department of State’s most important tools for preventing international parental child abduction.  In 2020, we enrolled over 3,000 children into the CPIAP, a decrease of

29 percent from 2019. If a passport application is submitted for a child who is enrolled in the CPIAP, the program allows the Office of Children’s Issues to contact the enrolling parent(s) or legal guardians(s) to verify whether the parental consent requirement for issuance of a passport to a minor has been met. Parents can access the enrollment forms through the Department of State’s  website or by contacting the Office of Children’s Issues.

When alerted to a possible abduction in progress, the Office of Children’s Issues liaises with law enforcement officials to seek to prevent a child from departing from the United States if a parent or legal guardian of the child presents an order

from a court of competent jurisdiction prohibiting the removal of the child from the United States.  In 2020, we helped enroll 200 children in U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s (CBP) Prevent Abduction Program, a decrease of 45 percent from

2019.  More information on this program is available on  CBP ’s web si t e .

We believe the decrease in prevention-related inquiries, CPIAP enrollment requests, and requests for enrollment in CBP’s Prevent Abduction Program are a reflection of the COVID-19 impact on travel and anticipate a significant increase as travel resumes.

Immediate Steps that May Help Prevent an Abduction:

Obtain a court order:  A court order can be an important preventive measure. The Office of Children’s Issues strongly encourages parents to consult an attorney regarding their particular circumstances, including the possibility of obtaining an order that prohibits their child from traveling outside of the United States.

Contact law enforcement:  Inform law enforcement immediately of any court orders, and the potential for international parental child abduction.

Contact airport police and the airlines:  Contact the airlines and airport law enforcement at the departing airport.

Contact the foreign embassy or consulate:  Inform the foreign embassy or

consulate nearest you if your child is or may be a dual national.

The Office of Children’s Issues’ duty officer program provides round-the-clock assistance by phone at 1-888-407-4747 to assist parents and law enforcement officials to thwart international parental child abductions. The Office of Children’ s Issues’ prevention team can also be reached via email at PreventAbduction1@state.gov for non-emergency questions or assistance.

Cooperation with Law Enforcement

Federal, state, and local law enforcement bodies have a prominent role in the prevention and resolution of international parental child abduction. When law enforcement authorities encounter a child at risk for IPCA, or who has been abducted internationally, they should contact the Office of Children’s Issues immediately. The Department of State engages regularly in outreach efforts to law enforcement regarding our role and the resources the Department has to assist them in abduction cases.

The Sean and David Goldman International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (the Act) of 2014 increased collaboration on IPCA among federal agencies.  The Department of State maintains regular contact with law enforcement agencies and organizes biannual interagency meetings to improve coordin ation efforts to prevent international parental child abductions. Participants include the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Department of Justice (DOJ), including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS), and the Department of Defense (DOD). The International Criminal

Police Organization (INTERPOL) and the National Center for Missing &

Exploited Children also participate. This interagency cooperation has increased the effectiveness of the Department of State’s round-the-clock duty officer program to assist parents whose children may be imminently at risk of international parental child abduction, or who need assistance facilitating the safe return of their child from abroad.

As part of the ongoing collaboration between the Department of State and DHS, the Office of Children’s Issues has placed two prevention officers at CBP’s National Targeting Center as liaisons.  This arrangement has enhanced communication, streamlined processing of time-sensitive cases, expedited responses from both Departments, and expanded the Department of State’s relationships with law enforcement entities.

Diplomatic Efforts to Combat International Parental Child Abduction

The Office of Children’s Issues engages with both Convention partners and non- partners to prevent and resolve international parental child abductions. The Office of Children’s Issues conducts long-term advocacy to improve cooperation with foreign governments on abduction matters by encouraging countries to become party to the Convention, to provide meaningful assistance in abductions not falling under the Convention, and to strengthen compliance with the Convention where applicable.

The Office of Children’s Issues manages diplomatic engagement on abductio n matters in coordination with Department of State regional bureaus and other offices.  Country officers maintain regular contact with counterparts in foreign central authorities, foreign missions in Washington, D.C., and U.S. diplomatic missions overseas.  Each abduction is unique and each country has its own distinct judicial system, law enforcement entities, and cultural and family traditions.  The Department of State tailors its strategy to deploy the most effective bilateral approach with each country.

The Office of Children’s Issues leverages the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) to further diplomatic engagement with foreign leaders and improve understanding and implementation of the Convention.  IVLP participants are emerging leaders who travel through the United States to engage with U.S. counterparts in public and private sector organizations at the national, state, and local levels. Officers from the Office of Children’s Issues with regional expertise in prevention and abduction regularly meet with IVLP participants to provide an overview of the U.S. Central Authority’s role in preventing and resolving international parental child abductions. IVLP delegations often include judges and attorneys, government officials, and civil society leaders. In 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office of Children’s Issues was not able to host or engage in-person with IVLP participants.  The Office of Children’s Issues virtually hosted and engaged with IVLP participants from Jamaica.

Throughout 2020, senior U.S. government officials continued to engage, both virtually and in-person, with foreign officials around the world to promote the prevention and resolution of international parental child abductions. They also used these opportunities to raise concerns regarding individual cases with foreign officials. The following are some examples of these efforts:

•   In January 2020, the Director of the Office of Children’s Issues and other Department officials met with senior representatives from the Embassy of Peru in the United States to raise concerns regarding Peru’s compliance with the Hague Abduction Convention.

•   In January 2020, during the U.S.-India Consular Dialogue, the Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs presented a proposal for a Joint Committee on International Parental Child Abduction (IPCA) to the Government of India.  Soon after that meeting, the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Overseas Citizens Services traveled to New Delhi to follow up on the proposal with the Indian government.

•   In January 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues travelled to Riyadh for the biannual U.S.-Saudi Joint Commission to Address International Parental Child Abduction, established through the bilateral Memorandum of Understanding in 2017.

•   In January 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues travelled to the United Arab Emirates where she met with the Assistant Minister for Human Rights and International Law to discuss the resolution of

existing abduction cases and to encourage the United Arab Emirates to

accede to the Convention.

•   In January 2020, Department of State officials met with the Japan Central Authority to discuss Japan’s progress on IPCA and passage of new enforcement legislation, as well as support for a new initiative on pre-Convention cases.

•   In February 2020, Department officials travelled to Israel to meet with the Israeli Central Authority to discuss Hague Convention cases and to foster the strong relationship the United States has with Israel under the Convention.

•   In February 2020, the Chargé d’Affaires, a.i., at U.S. Embassy Brasilia raised the Department’s concern with lengthy judicial delays in Brazil at a roundtable with Brazilian press.

•   In April 2020, the U.S. Ambassador to Brazil pressed the Brazilian

Minister of Justice and Public Security for support advancing a

Brazilian Executive Order meant to improve Brazil’s handling of

Convention cases.

•   In June 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues, the Director of the Office of Children’s Issues, and other officials met virtually with the Honduran and Mexican Central Authorities to discuss Hague Convention processes and location issues, highlighting the importance

of close coordination among the three Central Authorities.

•   In July 2020, Department of State officials held a virtual meeting with the Dominican Republic Central Authority to discuss case processing in both countries.  The Department also requested information on judicial procedures and discussed delays in the appeal process. Communication between Central Authorities increased significantly and close collaboration yielded case resolutions.

•   In July 2020, the Deputy Secretary of State met with the Indian Ambassador to the United States and delivered a letter urging the Government of India to agree to the Joint Committee on IPCA and accede to the Hague Abduction Convention.

•   In July 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues met with the Ambassador of Brazil in Washington, D.C. to urge Brazil to support a Brazilian judicial working group established to address areas of concern in the courts.

•   In September 2020, at approximately 1.5 years into Hague partnership

with Jamaica, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues and the

Director of the Office of Children’s Issues hosted a virtual International Visitor Leadership Program where Jamaican participants ranging from the Ministry of Justice, to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Child Protection and Family Services Agency to the Office of the Children’s Advocate gained an understanding of the functions and interconnectivity between various parts of the U.S. Government and entities involved in Convention cases.

•   In September 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues met with the Consul General of the Embassy of Argentina in Washington to discuss Argentine efforts to improve Convention compliance in the

judiciary.

•   In October 2020, Department of State officials met with the Honduran Central Authority to discuss administrative processing delays and encourage the prompt filing of cases in the judiciary. Shortly after this meeting, all pending cases were filed in the judiciary.

•   In October 2020, the Under Secretary for Management met with the Ministry of External Affairs during a trip to India and urged the Indian government to participate in the proposed Joint Committee on IPCA.

•   In October 2020, Department of State officials met with the Trinidad and Tobago Central Authority to discuss significant delays in case acceptance and appeals processing. Shortly after this meeting, pending cases were either accepted or filed in the judiciary.

•   In November 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues and the Director of the Office of Children’s Issues, in coordination with the U.S. Embassy in Riyadh, hosted Saudi officials virtually for the biannual

U.S.-Saudi Joint Commission to address International Parental Child Abduction, established through the bilateral Memorandum of Understanding in 2017.

•   In November 2020, Department of State officials met with the Colombian Central Authority to clarify case processing and reinforce the importance of judicial expediency in Convention cases.

•   In November 2020, Department of State officials, including the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Overseas Citizens Services, participated in the biannual U.S.-European Union Consular Dialogue. Participants discussed Convention compliance, and all sides committed to ongoing dialogue and prioritizing resolution of IPCA cases.

•   In November 2020, Department officials met with the Ecuadorian Central Authority and the specialized law enforcement unit for children in Ecuador, DINAPEN, to encourage greater cooperation between the United States and Ecuador on resolving Convention cases.

•   In November 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues met virtually with Japan Ministry of Foreign Affairs officials to discuss an ongoing bilateral initiative on pre-Convention abduction cases and to reconfirm mutual commitment to resolving both pre-Convention cases and abduction cases under the Convention.

•   In November 2020, officials from the American Institute in Taiwan met with Taiwan authorities for the second annual Joint Commission Meeting on International Parental Child Abduction to discuss resolution of existing cases.

•   In December 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues met virtually with the Pakistan Minister of Law and Justice and representatives from the Pakistan Central Authority to launch the Convention partnership between the United States and Pakistan which entered into force October 1.  The officials pledged cooperation in addressing abduction cases, including pre-Convention cases, as well as developing Pakistan’s Convention implementation protocols.

•   In December 2020, a Department official was invited to participate in a virtual two-day conference on the Hague Abduction Convention hosted by the Ecuadorian Central Authority to discuss best practices for encouraging prompt case resolution.

•   In December 2020, the Special Advisor for Children’s Issues and the Director of the Office of Children’s Issues met with representatives from the Peruvian Central Authority, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, a nd the Ambassador for Peru to the United States to encourage Peru to address its judicial delays and to press for more substantive communication with the Peruvian Central Authority.

•   In December 2020, U.S. Embassy San Salvador officials, with the U.S.

Central Authority participating virtually, met with the Salvadoran

Central Authority. The parties discussed Hague Convention processes to improve understanding and to strengthen cooperation.

•   In December 2020, Department of State officials held a virtual meeting with the Austrian Central Authority to discuss case processing and case management in both countries. The Department also requested

information on judicial procedures and reforms in Austria, as well as raised concerns about enforcement proceedings.

•   In December 2020, the U.S. Ambassador to Brazil met with the newly – elected Chief Justice of Brazil’s Supreme Federal Tribunal to discuss options for improving judicial processes in Brazil related to Convention cases.

•   In December 2020, the Department hosted an online meeting between the U.S., Ukrainian, Israeli, and German Central Authorities to facilitate information sharing and to learn about changes to Ukraine’s Convention procedures and its efforts to improve enforcement

legislation.  Each Central Authority provided information about its own procedures and offered suggestions for challenges the other Central Authorities face.

•   In a December 2020 meeting with the Romanian Minister of Justice, the U.S. Ambassador to Romania raised Department concerns with Romania’s failure to enforce a Romanian court order to return U.S. citizen children to the United States as agreed to under the Convention.

Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction

What is the Convention?

The Hague Convention of 25 October 1980 on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Convention) is an international treaty that establishes a civil mechanism to promptly return children who have been removed from or retained outside of their country of habitual residence in violation of custodial rights. Parents can also seek access to their children across international borders under the Convention. The Convention has proven to be one of the most effective tools available for parents or legal guardians to seek the return of their abducted

children. The Convention entered into force for the United States on July 1, 1988.

Each country that is a party to the Convention must designate a Central Authority, which serves as the main point of contact for parents and other governments involved in IPCA cases.  The Central Authority helps to locate abducted children and processes requests for the return of, or access to, these children.

What is the Hague Permanent Bureau?

The Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference on Private Internation al Law, commonly referred to as the Hague Permanent Bureau, supports international implementation of this Convention and other Hague Conventions on an ongoing basis.  The Hague Permanent Bureau maintains the Hague Conference’s website containing resources such as the  Guides to Good Practice that may help a country effectively implement the Convention.

What is the role of the Department of State in Convention cases?

The Department of State’s Office of Children’s Issues serves as the U.S. Central Authority for the Convention and leads U.S. government efforts to combat international parental child abduction within the Department of State and with other U.S. government agencies.  The Office of Children’s Issues coordinates with other relevant offices in the Department of State as well as Congress, law

enforcement, social services agencies, attorneys, and other organizations as needed

in specific cases or in the development and implementation of U.S. government policy.

When a child is wrongfully removed from or is being wrongfully retained in a country with which the United States has partnered under the Convention, a parent can file an application requesting that the child be returned to the United States.  A parent may also request access to a child under the Convention. The Office of Children’s Issues serves as the primary point of contact for both parents and foreign central authorities (FCAs) and will liaise with FCAs and U.S. embassies and consulates abroad to confirm the child’s welfare and facilitate the filing of the application, as appropriate. The Office of Children’s Issues submits completed applications to the FCA in the country where the parent believes the child to be located.

After the application for return or access has been filed, FCAs must take all appropriate measures to locate wrongfully removed or retained children and facilitate the institution of judicial or administrative proceedings with a view to obtaining the return of the child unless specific exceptions apply. Courts should decide these cases promptly, and the Office of Children’s Issues monitors Convention cases throughout the foreign administrative and legal processes.

Does the Convention apply to all international parental abductions?

No. The Convention does not apply to every international abduction or retention.

The Convention must have been in force between the two countries when the wrongful removal or retention occurred.  The Convention is in force between the United States and 80 partners.

In order to seek a return under the Convention, a parent or legal guardian must show that:

•   The child is under the age of 16.

•   The child was habitually resident in one Convention country immediately before any breach of custodial rights and was wrongfully removed to or retained in another Convention country.

•   The removal or retention of the child was wrongful; a removal or retention is considered wrongful if it was in violation of custodial rights, and the parent was exercising those rights at the time of the removal or retention or would have been but for the removal or retention.

Will a child return if a parent files a Convention case?

Under the Convention, the judicial or administrative authorities of Contracting States may refuse to return an abducted child to a country of habitual residence under specific exceptions.  Contracting States vary in how they interpret the exceptions.

Will a parent gain access to a child by filing a Convention case?

Countries vary greatly in how they handle requests for access under the

Convention.

If a parent already has a U.S. custody order, why pursue a Convention case?

U.S. court orders may not be recognized in other countries.  The Convention provides a civil legal mechanism to request the return of or access to a child. Parents may wish to consult an attorney to determine the best strategy for their particular circumstances.  While the Office of Children’s Issues and U.S. embassies and consulates cannot provide legal advice, the Department of State provides information about  retaining a foreign attorney and  U.S. embassies generally publish lists of attorneys who have identified themselves as willing to assist U.S. citizen clients.  Foreign law directories, bar associations, or other organizations may be able to provide additional information on legal counsel in a

foreign country.

The Role of the Department of State in Non-Convention Cases

The Office of Children’s Issues also leads the U.S. government response to international parental child abduction to countries that are not Convention partners with the United States.  For parents whose children have been wrongfully removed to or retained in countries that are not Convention partners with the United States, the Office of Children’s Issues can provide information and resources about country-specific options for pursuing the return of or access to an abducted child. The Department may also coordinate with appropriate foreign and U.S.

government authorities to monitor the welfare of abducted U.S. citizen children and encourage voluntary resolutions, as appropriate. The Office of Children’s Issues or a U.S. embassy can also provide a  list of attorneys who have expressed their willingness to represent U.S. citizen clients in the country where the chil d is located.

Parents should consider consulting an attorney who can provide legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.

Assistance to U.S. Military Personnel and Their Families

Providing assistance to our U.S. military service members and their families is a priority for the Department. We work closely with the Department of Defense to facilitate Convention applications, explain options available to parents, and inform military liaisons about options in abduction and access proceedings.  We recognize that abductions involving military parents present unique challenges.  For that reason, we provide training to our military colleagues who may be in a position to help military families mitigate the risk of loss of contact with children and to understand the legal means available to prevent and resolve abduction cases.

The Department of State is engaged with the Department of Defense’s Office of Legal Policy and the Service Chiefs of Legal Assistance for all branches of the military on IPCA issues that may impact military service members and their families.  The Office of Children’s Issues and Department of State attorneys regularly provide training to educate military lawyers and others on measures for preventing and resolving international parental child abductions. For example, in

2020, a team from the Office of Children’s Issues provided virtual trainings for

judge advocates and staff of legal assistance offices at U.S. military bases in East

Asia and the Pacific and Europe. Participants joined from U.S. Army, Air Force,

Navy, and Marine bases in Japan, South Korea, Germany, Spain, Italy, Belgium, and the Netherlands.

Generally, while serving overseas, active-duty U.S. military service members and their accompanying dependents are subject to the foreign country’s laws.  Civil issues, including family law matters, generally fall under the jurisdiction of the host country’s courts.  The country where a U.S. military family is living may be considered the family’s habitual residence.  For more information, please see our website.  The Department of Defense may have additional resources to assist in preventing and resolving international parental child abductions.

In 2020, the Office of Children’s Issues responded to one initial inquiry from a military parent regarding a possible abduction for which no completed application was submitted to the Department. The Office of Children’s Issues also worked on seven abduction cases affecting military parents. Of these, one case was resolved and the other six cases remained open at the end of the year. None were unresolved for 12 months or longer.

Children Returned to the United States and Other Resolutions

In 2020, 185 abducted children returned to the United States.

The majority, 150 children, returned from Convention countries, while 35 children returned from countries adhering to no protocols with respect to child abduction, as defined in the Act.

Last year, the Department worked on 68 abduction cases that were resolved without the abducted children returning to the United States.  These include cases that were closed for the following reasons: (1) the judicial or administrative authority complied with the Convention and determined not to return the child under the provisions of the Convention; (2) the parents reached a voluntary arrangement for the child to remain; (3) the left-behind parent withdrew the application or request; (4) the left-behind parent could not be located by the Office of Children’s Issues for more than one year; and (5) the left-behind parent or child passed away.

Of the 68 cases noted above, four involved Convention member countries, and 27 involved non-Convention countries.

Other Issues Regarding International Parental Child Abduction

Voluntary Agreements

Voluntary agreements are an important mechanism through which international parental child abduction cases may be resolved.  This is true in both the Convention and non-Convention context. Parents can simultaneously pursue both a return through the Convention and a voluntary agreement.

Parents considering mediation or other forms of alternative dispute resolution should always consult a legal representative for guidance, as mediation may or may not be the right option for a particular case.

Domestic Violence Resources Available in IPCA cases

Recognizing that some parents and children impacted by international parental child abduction are also survivors of domestic violence, the Office of Children’s Issues encourages families to seek appropriate resources and legal advice.  There are more than 10,000 organizations and agencies in the United States that provide support and services to victims of crime, including domestic violence, regardless of their immigration status. Services may include counseling, language

interpretation, safety planning, emergency housing in confidential shelters, and

emergency financial assistance. There are toll-free telephone helpline services with trained operators who help survivors at all hours, seven days a week, may be able to provide translation, and can connect a victim with free local services.

Survivors may seek court intervention and obtain protection orders, child custody and divorce orders, and child support orders.  Civil and criminal court judges can order several remedies to promote the safety and welfare of the victim and children, including parenting classes, substance abuse classes, and drug rehabilitation. Prosecutors may also pursue criminal charges and penalties.

Under the Hague Abduction Convention, a judge may decline to return a child to his or her country of habitual residence if there is a grave risk that returning the child would expose the child to physical or psychological harm or otherwise place the child in an intolerable situation.

While the Department of State can refer survivors of domestic violence to various federal or state-specific organizations, shelters, attorneys, and other resources, it does not assess the veracity of domestic violence allegations, or any other factual matters, in abduction cases.

In 1996, the U.S. government launched the National Domestic Violence Hotline, a

24-hour, toll-free service that provides crisis assistance and local shelter referral

for callers across the country. The telephone number is (800) 799-SAFE ((800)

799-7233). The TDD number for the hearing impaired is (800) 787-3224.

Criminal Laws and Remedies

International parental child abduction is a crime in the United States.

Under the International Parental Kidnapping Crime Act, anyone who “removes a child from the United States, or attempts to do so, or retains a child (who has been in the United States) outside the United States with intent to obstruct the lawful exercise of parental rights” may be imprisoned for up to three years.  In addition, every state and the District of Columbia have criminal laws regarding parental kidnapping. It is important that parents seek legal advice before moving or retaining a child across international borders.

A decision by a left-behind parent about whether to  pursue criminal charges

against the taking parent is a difficult one that should be made through consultation with a legal representative and in consideration of its potential impact on other aspects of their efforts to secure the child’s return. Depending on the circumstances, criminal charges filed against the taking parent can either help or hinder the successful return of the child.

Resources for U.S. Judges in the Application of the Convention

As the U.S. Central Authority, the Office of Children’s Issues helps to educate judges in the United States on the Convention. Judges hearing Convention cases can access important resources including legal analysis and abduction prevention tools and information at: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/International- Parental-Child-Abduction/for-providers/for-judges.html.

We send letters to U.S. judges hearing Convention cases in the United States that highlight important aspects of the Convention. The letters reference articles such

as the requirement for cases to be handled expeditiously and for the court to decide habitual residence rather than custody. The letters also further explain our role as the U.S. Central Authority and provide additional resources such as the United

States’ implementing legislation, the International Child Abduction Remedies Act.

We notify judges that the U.S. members of the International Hague Network of

Judges, who are experts on the Convention, are available for consultation on IPCA

cases.  The role of a Network Judge is to help facilitate direct judicial communications by serving as a link to his/her colleagues at the domestic level and other members of the Network at an international level.

Use of Airlines in Abductions

Many international parental child abductions take place via international airline flights, although the Department has no specific data on this issue.  In June 2011, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) thoroughly reviewed commercial airline practices aimed at preventing international parental child abduction. The GAO report addressed the appropriate role of commercial airlines in preventing international parental child abductions. The Department recommends the following best practices for airlines to aid in preventing abductions:

1. Efforts to Support and Cooperate with Law Enforcement: Federal and state law enforcement entities have a prominent role in preventing abductions and airlines should work to support law enforcement agencies in this role. As private sector entities, airlines in the United States do not have the authority to enforce custody orders. Commercial airlines’ main role related to the prevention of abductions is cooperating, upon request, with law enforcement officials.

2. Know How to Report: Commercial airline employees should be made aware of the Office of Children’s Issues’ contact information and potential child abduction indicators, so that abduction cases reported to the airlines, either by parents, attorneys, courts, law enforcement officials, or other stakeholders may be appropriately referred for immediate assistance. The Department of State provides brochures that contain the Department’s contact information and information on potential child abduction indicators to port authorities, airline employees, and the general public. The Department will continue its outreach activities to these stakeholders.

How to Use This Report

This report provides Congress with information regarding international parental child abduction. To that end, readers may find a data page for every country with one or more open abduction cases during 2020 that were reported to the Office of Children’s Issues for a child whose reported habitual residence is the United States. These pages are organized into two sections. The first section consists of countries determined to have demonstrated a pattern of noncompliance during 2020 as defined by the Act. The second section consists of the remainder of countries with

one or more abduction or access cases for a child whose reported habitual residence is the United States.  Countries that did not have an open abduction or access case in 2020 are not listed in this Report.

Each country data page includes a country summary, a table containing data on cases open with the Office of Children’s Issues in 2019 and 2020, and an evaluation of the foreign central authority. Additionally, readers will find status reports on Department of State requests for governments to locate children, rulings by foreign judicial authorities, actions taken to enforce judicial orders, and Department recommendations.  For those countries where the Department submitted cases to a foreign central authority, an additional table appears under the central authority section with data required by the Act.

This Report presents a snapshot of abduction and access cases in a country during calendar year 2020.  The volume of cases over this period may not be sufficient to indicate major trends in a particular country. Therefore, the Office of Children’s Issues recommends considering the information presented in this report along with the information presented in  previous annual reports on IPCA and the other topical annual reports and  country information the Department of State publishes.

During 2020, many abduction and access cases experienced impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, including but not limited to administrative delays, court closures, travel restrictions, and quarantine requirements.  Many Central Authorities transitioned from in-person to virtual work.  Our evaluation of country performance, including our citation of countries for patterns of noncompliance, does not rely on the impacts of COVID-19, but rather on that country’s performance measures as defined by the Act.

The following blank country data page with accompanying definitions explains how data is organized in this report.

Understanding the Country Pages

Country Summary:  This section indicates whether the country is a party to the Hague Convention of 25 October 1980 on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Convention), and whether the Convention is in force between the country and the United States. For countries not party to the Convention, if the Office of Children’s Issues has established bilateral procedures with the country, that will also be indicated in the summary. This section will also state if a country is being cited for a “pattern of noncompliance” as defined in the Act.  All

commentary on this page refers to the country’s performance during calendar year

2020. If appropriate, previous citations will also be included here.

    2019 Cases   2019 Children   2020 Cases   2020 Children Abduction Cases Open at the Start of the Year includes any abduction case reported to the U.S. Central Authority prior to January 1 that had not been resolved or closed by that date.  An abduction case is any abduction matter reported to the U.S. Central Authority for which a parent or legal guardian has submitted sufficient documentation to meet the definition of “abduction case” as defined in 22 U.S.C. §9101. New Abduction Cases reflects reported abduction cases received by the U.S. Central Authority from January 1 through December 31, which meet the definition of “abduction case” as defined in 22 U.S.C. §9101. Abduction Cases Resolved During the Year reflects the number of reported abduction cases resolved from January 1 through December 31. A resolved abduction case is defined as any reported abduction that was resolved for one of the following reasons: 1) the child was returned; 2) the judicial or administrative authority complied with the Hague Abduction Convention; 3) the parents reached a voluntary arrangement; 4) the left-behind parent withdrew the application or request; 5) the left- behind parent could not be located for one year despite documented efforts by the U.S. Central Authority to locate the parent; or 6) the death of the child or left-behind parent. Abduction Cases Closed During the Year includes abduction cases closed for reasons other than those listed in the definition of a resolved abduction case. Abduction Cases Still Open at the End of the Year counts abduction cases still open on December 31.    

Initial Inquiries:  The number of inquiries for which U.S. Central Authority staff provided information and resources, but no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31, 2020.

Table 1:  Abduction Cases reported to the U.S. Central Authority

Abduction and access cases are dynamic and require coordinating information among several parties. Each year, the Report is based on the information available at the time of publication; for some countries, there may be minor discrepancies in the data between the end of one year and start of another as a result of information obtained after the reporting period.  Additionally, the total number of the children listed under abduction cases resolved, closed, and still open in some country pages may not equal the number of children for the total abduction cases in that year, as individual outcomes for some children may be different from those of other children in a given case.

Significant Developments:  Changes to a country’s law or other events that impact the handling of abduction matters in a country are reported here.

Central Authority:  Countries party to the Convention designate an office to carry out Convention responsibilities. For non-Convention countries, the central authority is the “foreign ministry or other appropriate authority of such country,”

22 U.S.C. §9101 (10). This section of the Report assesses the country’s central

    2019 Cases   2019 Children   2020 Cases   2020 Children Abduction Cases Filed with the FCA at the Start of the Year reflects any abduction case pending with the foreign central authority on January 1. New Cases Filed with the FCA reflects abduction cases the U.S. Central Authority transmitted to the foreign central authority from January 1 through December 31. Total Cases on File with the FCA During the Year reflects the total number of abduction cases pending with the foreign central authority at any time during the year. Cases That Have Been Unresolved for Over 12 Months.  In a Convention country, an abduction case that remains unresolved for a period that exceeds 12 months after the date on which the completed application for return of the child is submitted for determination to the judicial or administrative authority, as applicable, in the country in which the child is located.  In a non-Convention country, an abduction case that remains unresolved for a period that exceeds 12 months after the date on which the request for return of the child was submitted to the foreign ministry or other appropriate authority in the country in which the child is located. FCA Caseload Unresolved at the End of the Year is the percent of the abduction cases pending with the foreign central authority or relevant foreign government office that were unresolved on December 31.    

authority, where appropriate.

Table 2:  Abduction cases conveyed to the country by the U.S. Central Authority

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention directs central authorities to “take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” This section indicates the number of abduction cases that were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: In a Convention country, location is the step after the U.S. Central Authority has transmitted the abduction case to the foreign central authority and the responsible authorities attempt to locate the child.  In a non-Convention country, location refers to requests made by the Department of State to the

competent authorities to locate a child reported abducted to its territory.  This section describes the country’s performance in locating children that were reported abducted to the country.

Judicial Authorities:  This section describes the performance of the country’s judicial or administrative body with adjudicative authority to hear and decide upon abduction or access cases.

Enforcement: This section describes the country’s performance implementing

judicial or administrative orders in abduction or access cases.

Access:  This section describes any access cases with the country during 2020.  In an access case, a parent or legal guardian seeks access to the child or children living in a foreign country through the Convention.

Pre-Convention Cases:  If the Convention is in force between the United States and the country, this section will indicate whether there are ongoing cases that predate the Convention partnership.

Department Recommendations:  This section describes the Department’s recommendations for future engagement with the country concerning international parental child abduction.

                                                                                                                                                  27  

COUNTRIES DEMONSTRATING A PATTERN OF NONCOMPLIANCE

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Argentina since 1991.  In 2020, Argentina continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, the Argentine judicial authorities failed to regularly implement and comply with the provisions of the Convention. As a

result of this failure, 67 percent of requests for the return of abducted children under the Convention remained unresolved for more than 12 months.  On average, these cases were unresolved for six years. Argentina was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2015-2020 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Argentina for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2222
New abduction cases1111
Total abduction cases3333
Abduction cases resolved during the year111 (33%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year222 (67%)2

Significant Developments:  Draft legislation designed to address Argentina’s

judicial delays, introduced in the Argentine legislature in 2018, was not enacted in

2020.  Serious delays persisted within the Argentine judiciary in 2020, contributing to a pattern of noncompliance.

Additionally, in 2020, there was a significant changeover of Argentine Central Authority officials working with the U.S. Central Authority, leading to some delays in communication.

Central Authority:  While the U.S. and Argentine Central Authorities have a cooperative relationship, delays in communication about actions to address patterns of noncompliance are an area of concern.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2222
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2233
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months2222
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 67% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed. It took eight days to locate this child.

Judicial Authorities:  There were serious delays by the Argentine judicial authorities in deciding Convention cases.  As a result of these delays, cases may be pending with the judiciary for over one year, contributing to a pattern of noncompliance.

Enforcement:  In one case pending for more than 11 years, Argentina has not enforced a return order for the last several years.  Additionally, Argentina’s legal system allows multiple appeals both on the merits of the decision and on the manner in which the decisions are enforced, thereby creating excessive delays which contribute to a pattern of noncompliance.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the Convention in Argentina.  This case was opened in 2018. This case has been filed with the Argentine Central Authority.  No new cases were filed in 2020. By December 31, 2020, this case remained open. This case has been pending with the Argentine authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue intense engagement with Argentine authorities to address issues of concern.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Brazil since 2003. In 2020, Brazil continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, the Brazilian judicial authorities failed to regularly implement and comply with the provisions of the Convention. Additionally, the competent authorities failed to take appropriate steps to locate a child in an abduction case, contributing to Brazil’s persistent failure to implement and abide by the provisions of the Convention.  As a result of these persistent failures, 75 percent of requests for the return of abducted children under the Convention remained unresolved for more than 12 months. On average, these cases were unresolved for three years and eight months.  Brazil was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2006-2020 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received three initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Brazil for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year912914
New abduction cases3545
Total abduction cases12171319
Abduction cases resolved during the year351 (8%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year91412 (92%)17

Significant Developments:  During this reporting period, there were no

resolutions as defined by the Act—including zero returns from Brazil to the United

States—of abduction cases on file with the Brazilian Central Authority in 2020. In contrast, the United States returned seven wrongfully removed or retained children to Brazil.

In 2020, Brazil’s Federal Justice Council issued an ordinance forming a group of judges tasked with a number of items, including producing an informational booklet for the public on abduction cases and organizing a training seminar for Brazilian judges.  To the Department’s knowledge, none of these objectives was met in the reporting period.

In a majority of cases open at the end of calendar year 2020 in which there are judicial delays, the Brazilian Central Authority reported that Brazil’s Federal Public Ministry (MPF) was involved at some point.  In some instances, it appeared that MPF intervention impacted cases.  In other instances, actions by the MPF appeared to lengthen judicial proceedings in Brazil.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and Brazilian Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year912914
New cases filed with the FCA2433
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year11161217
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months68914
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year55% 75% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means before the case was filed with the Brazilian Central Authority, and the child returned to the United States.

Location: Brazil demonstrated a pattern of noncompliance with the Convention as a result of failure by the competent authorities to take appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. As a result, there is one case (accounting for 11 percent of the unresolved cases) that has been pending for more than 12 months where law enforcement has failed to locate the children, leading to significant delays in initiating the legal proceedings. The average time to locate a child was 37 days.

Judicial Authorities:  There were serious delays by the Brazilian judicial authorities in deciding Convention cases.  As a result of these delays, cases may be pending with the judiciary for over one year, contributing to a pattern of noncompliance.  In 2020, the Department was again unaware of any Brazilian efforts to address judicial delays, despite repeated engagement during the year by the Ambassador, senior Mission personnel, and the Department with counterparts

in the Brazilian government. This failure to improve Convention implementation continues in the form of delays at the first-instance, the appellate, and the enforcement stages.  As a result, the Department remains deeply concerned with the Brazilian judiciary’s repeated failure to regularly implement and comply with the provisions of the Hague Abduction Convention.  Moreover, the U.S. Central Authority is deeply concerned by language that was clearly non-compliant with the Convention in more than one judicial decision.  In these decisions, the courts used inaccurate definitions for a defense to a return claim.

Enforcement: While courts in Brazil ordered returns under the Convention, Brazilian authorities were not able to enforce these orders.  In one notable case, after 11 years of litigation at all levels of the Brazilian judiciary, the Brazilian Central Authority reported that the Brazilian court still failed to enforce its own judiciary’s order for return.  Moreover, judicial decisions in Convention cases in Brazil were generally not enforced by the judiciary, which contributed to a pattern of noncompliance.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of two open access cases under the Convention in Brazil. Both of these cases were opened prior to

2020. Both cases had been filed with the Brazilian Central Authority. By

December 31, 2020, both of these cases had been resolved.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue intense engagement with Brazilian authorities to address issues of concern and will consider actions to prompt better Brazilian compliance with the Convention.

Country Summary: The Convention has been in force between the United States and Costa Rica since 2008.  In 2020, Costa Rica continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, the judicial authorities failed to regularly implement and comply with the provisions of the Convention. As a result of this failure, 29 percent of requests for the return of abducted children under the Convention remained unresolved for more than 12 months. The Department is unaware of any judicially ordered returns of children to the United States in 2020. On average, these cases were unresolved for one year and nine months.  Costa Rica was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2011 –

2016, and 2020 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries:  In 2020, the Department received two initial inquiries from parents regarding a possible abduction to Costa Rica for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3345
New abduction cases2333
Total abduction cases5678
Abduction cases resolved during the year342(28.5%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year003(43%)3
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year222(28.5%)2

Significant developments:  Costa Rica’s Supreme Court, with the support of the Department, successfully hosted a series of virtual seminars from November 2020 through February 2021 on Hague Abduction Convention best practices. The seminars brought together Costa Rican Supreme Court judges, Department representatives, as well as legal experts and judges from Costa Rica, Uruguay, Argentina, Mexico, Spain, Canada, and the United States.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Costa Rican Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year3345
New cases filed with the FCA3433
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year6778
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1122
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year17% 29% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. On average, it took less than one month to locate a child. As of December 31, 2020, there were no open cases where the Costa Rican authorities remained unable to locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  There were significant delays by the Costa Rican judicial authorities in deciding Convention cases.  As a result of these delays, cases may be pending with the judiciary for over one year, contributing to a pattern o f noncompliance.  Additionally, judicial authorities rendered one decision that was not compliant with the Convention.  Another case remained unresolved for one year and three months.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Costa Rican authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue intense engagement with the Costa Rican authorities to address issues of concern.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Ecuador since 1992.  In 2020, Ecuador demonstrated a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, the Ecuadorian judicial authorities failed to regularly implement and comply with the provisions of the Convention. As a result of this failure, 17 percent of requests for the return of abducted children under the Convention remained unresolved for more than 12 months. On average, these

cases were unresolved for one year and three months.  Ecuador was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2015-2020 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received six initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Ecuador for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3422
New abduction cases0056
Total abduction cases3478
Abduction cases resolved during the year123 (43%)4
Abduction cases closed during the year001 (14%)1
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year223 (43%)3

Significant Developments:  In 2020, the National Court of Justice (NCJ) and the Ecuadorian Central Authority (ECA) held virtual trainings for judges in Ecuador to discuss Convention best practices.  The Ecuadorian Hague Network Judge collaborated with the NCJ on the text of a legislative change to the Children’s

Code that the ECA reports will provide a procedural roadmap for resolving Convention cases in the courts.  The ECA also formulated a new administrative framework for international parental child abduction cases and presented the framework to the Ecuadorian National Assembly to reform their Children’s Code.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and Ecuadorian Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year3422
New cases filed with the FCA0044
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year3466
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year33% 17% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed.  The average time to locate a child was three and a half months.

Judicial Authorities:  There were serious delays by the Ecuadorian judicial authorities in deciding one Convention case.  As a result, cases may be pending with the judiciary for over one year, contributing to a pattern of noncompliance. All cases resolved in less than a year did not involve judicial decisions.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Ecuadorian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue its engagement with Ecuadorian authorities to address issues of concern.

Country Summary:  Egypt does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction. In 2003, the United States and Egypt signed a Memorandum of Understanding to encourage voluntary resolution of abduction cases and facilitate parental access to abducted children.  In 2020, Egypt continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance.  Specifically, the competent authorities in Egypt persistently failed to work with the Department of State to resolve abduction cases.  As a result of this failure, 24 percent of requests for the return of abducted children remained unresolved for more than 12 months. On average, these cases were unresolved for four years and eight months. Egypt was

previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2015, 2016,

2019, and 2020 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Egypt for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31,

2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year15261425
New abduction cases5833
Total abduction cases20341728
Abduction cases resolved during the year684 (24%)6
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year142513 (76%)22

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in Egypt worked closely with the United States to discuss ways to improve the resolution of pending abduction cases.  However, the competent authorities have failed to resolve cases due to a lack of viable legal options, which contributed to a pattern of noncompliance.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1015813
New cases filed with the FCA36915
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year13211728
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months6947
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year46% 24% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Egyptian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  There is no clear legal procedure for addressing international parental child abduction cases from the United States under Egyptian law and parents may face difficulties attempting to resolve custody disputes in the local courts.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Egyptian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Egypt to ratify the Convention and create the legal infrastructure needed for effective implementation of the Convention.

Country Summary:  India does not adhere to any protocols with respect to IPCA. In 2020, India continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance.  Specifically, the competent authorities in India persistently failed to work with the Department of State to resolve abduction cases.  In 2018, India formed a Mediation cell to resolve international child custody disputes.  However, the United States is not aware of any abduction cases between the United States and India that were resolved by this cell since its inception.  As a result of this failure, 73 percent of requests for the return of abducted children remained unresolved for more than 12 months.  On average, these cases were unresolved for two years and eight months. India was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the

2015-2020 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries:  In 2020, the Department received eight initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to India for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31,

2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year718289103
New abduction cases31391010
Total abduction cases10212199113
Abduction cases resolved during the year91315 (15%)17
Abduction cases closed during the year443 (3%)3
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year8910381 (82%)91

Significant Developments:  In January 2020, the Department proposed the formation of a U.S.-India Joint Committee on IPCA as a bilateral forum to facilitate cooperation on addressing international child abduction issues.  As of December 31, 2020, the Government of India continued discussions with the Department regarding a bilateral forum but had not agreed to participate in the Joint Committee.

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in India regularly failed to work with the Department of State toward the resolution of pending abduction cases.  Moreover, the competent authorities have failed to resolve cases due to a lack of viable legal options, which contributed to a pattern of noncompliance.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year41478294
New cases filed with the FCA4654810
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year8710190104
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months36416674
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year41% 73% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, six abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Indian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  There is no clear legal procedure for addressing international parental child abduction cases from the United States under Indian law and parents face difficulties attempting to resolve custody disputes in the local courts. Some left-behind parents reported difficulty with serving taking parents in India causing delays in court proceedings.  Additionally, judicial action in custody cases in India has been slow.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Indian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

India to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  Jordan does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction. In 2006, the United States and Jordan signed a Memorandum of Understanding to encourage voluntary resolution of abduction cases and facilitate parental access to abducted children.  In 2020, Jordan continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, the competent authorities in Jordan persistently failed to work with the Department of State to resolve abduction cases.  As a result of this failure, 50 percent of requests for the return of abducted children remained unresolved for more than 12 months. On average, these cases were unresolved for one year and eight months.  Jordan was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2015-

2020 Annual Reports.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year61069
New abduction cases4712
Total abduction cases1017711
Abduction cases resolved during the year482 (29%)4
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year695 (71%)7

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in Jordan worked closely with the United States to discuss ways to improve the resolution of pending abduction cases.  However, the competent authorities have failed to resolve cases due to a lack of viable legal options, which contributed to a pattern of noncompliance.  In 2018, the Government of Jordan began offering mediation services to parents involved in international parental child abductions through the Family Mediation Directorate. However, the United States is not aware of any abduction cases that were resolved through this service in 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1158
New cases filed with the FCA5911
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year61069
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1134
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year17% 50% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Jordanian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  There is no clear legal procedure for addressing international parental child abduction cases under Jordanian law.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Jordanian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

Jordan to accede to the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Peru since 2007.  In 2020, Peru continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance.  Specifically, the Peruvian Central Authority regularly failed to fulfill its responsibilities pursuant to the Convention and judicial authorities failed to regularly implement and comply with the provisions of the Convention.  As a result of this failure, 82 percent of requests for the return of abducted children under the Convention remained unresolved for more than 12 months.  On average, these cases were unresolved for three years.  Peru was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2014-2020 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries:  In 2020, the Department received four initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Peru for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year911913
New abduction cases2422
Total abduction cases11151115
Abduction cases resolved during the year221 (9%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year91310 (91%)14

Significant Developments:  In October 2019, Peru’s Judicial Authority drafted a judicial protocol intending to expedite Convention cases.  The protocol was not implemented in 2020.

Central Authority:  The Peruvian Central Authority’s lack of effective communication with the U.S. Central Authority regarding abduction cases and their refusal to participate in safe return planning related to a court-ordered return of a child to the United States in one case have contributed to a pattern of noncompliance.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year911913
New cases filed with the FCA2422
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year11151115
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months56913
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year45% 82% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 31 days.

Judicial Authorities:  There were serious delays by the Peruvian judicial authorities in deciding Convention cases.  As a result of these delays, cases may be pending with the judiciary for over one year, contributing to a pattern of noncompliance.

Enforcement: While a court in Peru ordered a return under the Convention, Peruvian authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue intense engagement with Peruvian authorities to address issues of concern.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Romania since 1993.  In 2020, Romania continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, law enforcement failed to enforce a return order rendered by the judicial authority in an abduction case.  As a result of this failure,

100 percent of requests for the return of abducted children under the Convention remained unresolved for more than 12 months. The case has been unresolved for two years and one month. Romania was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2015 – 2017 and 2020 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Romania for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1313
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1313
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year131 (100%)3

Central Authority:  The U.S. and Romanian Central Authorities have a productive relationship.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1313
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1313
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1313
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Romanian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Romanian judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: The taking parent did not voluntarily comply with a return order under the Convention and the judicial decision has not been enforced by law enforcement, which contributed to a pattern of noncompliance.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue intense engagement with the Romanian authorities to address issues of concern.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Trinidad and Tobago since 2013. In 2020, Trinidad and Tobago demonstrated a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, the Trinbagonian Central Authority regularly fails to fulfill its responsibilities pursuant to the Convention, and judicial authorities at the appellate level failed to regularly implement and comply with the provisions of the Convention.  As a result of this failure, 14 percent of requests for the return of abducted children under the Convention remained unresolved for more than 12 months.  At the end of 2020, one pre-Convention abduction case remained open in Trinidad and Tobago. The Department proactively monitors this case and raises it with senior officials in the Government of Trinidad and Tobago

at every appropriate opportunity.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received two initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Trinidad and Tobago for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year4836
New abduction cases1146
Total abduction cases59712
Abduction cases resolved during the year231 (14%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year366 (86%)11

Central Authority:  There have been serious delays in the processing of cases by the Trinidad and Tobago Central Authority, which contributed to a pattern of noncompliance.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year3736
New cases filed with the FCA1146
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year48712
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months2512
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year50% 14% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measure to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed.  The average time to locate a child was 26 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Trinidad and Tobago generally reached decisions without significant delays in the courts of first instance.  There were serious delays by the Trinbagonian judicial authorities at the appellate level in deciding Convention cases.  One case is unresolved for 4 years and 4 months and is currently pending a decision by the appellate court.

Enforcement: While a court in Trinidad and Tobago ordered a return under the Convention, the Trinbagonian authorities faced challenges with enforcement due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the Convention in Trinidad and Tobago. By December 31, 2020 this case had been resolved.

Pre-Convention Cases:  At the end of 2020, one pre-Convention abduction case remained open in Trinidad and Tobago.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue intense engagement with the Trinbagonian authorities to address issues of concern.

Country Summary:  The United Arab Emirates does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.  In 2020, the United Arab Emirates continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, the competent authorities in the United Arab Emirates persistently failed to work with the Department of State to resolve abduction cases.  As a result of this failure, 100 percent of requests for the return of abducted children remained unresolved for more than 12 months.  On average, these cases were unresolved for four years and seven months.  The United Arab Emirates was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2018, 2019, and 2020 Annual Reports.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3322
New abduction cases1111
Total abduction cases4433
Abduction cases resolved during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year223 (100%)3

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in the United Arab Emirates regularly failed to work with the Department of State toward the resolution of pending abduction cases.  Moreover, the competent authorities have failed to resolve cases due to a lack of viable legal options, which contributed to a pattern of noncompliance.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year3322
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year3322
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months2222
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year67% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from

Emirati authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Emirati judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Emirati authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage the

United Arab Emirates to accede to the Convention.

                                                                                                                                            51  

COUNTRIES WITH ONE OR MORE ABDUCTION CASES

Country Summary:  While Albania became party to the Convention in 2007, the Convention is not in force between Albania and the United States.  As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Albania for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31,

2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases1111
Total abduction cases1122
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (50%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 50%)1

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Albania have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Albanian law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Albanian authorities.  As of December 31, 2020, there is one case where the Albanian authorities have been assisting in the search process but remain unable to initially locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  Acting in accordance with local laws, the Albanian judicial authorities resolved abduction cases in a timely manner.

Enforcement: While domestic court orders in Albania are generally enforced, in the unresolved case reported above, the Albanian authorities faced challenges with enforcement given difficulties locating the child noted above.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will engage with Albanian government officials regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  Algeria does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Algeria have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Algerian law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Algerian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  There is no clear legal procedure for addressing international parental child abduction cases from the United States under Algerian law.

Enforcement: While domestic court orders in Algeria are generally enforced, in some cases the Algerian authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Algeria to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Australia since 1988.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received three initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Australia for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3500
New abduction cases11811
Total abduction cases46811
Abduction cases resolved during the year464 (50%)6
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year004 (50%)5

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Australian Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year3500
New cases filed with the FCA11811
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year46811
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. On average, it took less than one week to locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Australia routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Australian authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of three open access cases under the Convention in Australia. Of these, two cases were opened in 2020. One case was filed in 2019.       By December 31, 2020, all of these cases remained open.  One case has been pending with the Australian authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Australian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Austria since 1988. While the Department did not cite Austria for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in 2020, the Department is concerned about delays in the enforcement of Convention orders.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases1100
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Austrian Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 100% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Austrian judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: While a court in Austria ordered a return under the Convention, in a separate proceeding regarding enforcement of that order, a court in Austria has

declined to enforce the return order.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Austrian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention. The Department will continue to address the areas of concern with the Austrian Central Authority.

Country Summary:  Azerbaijan does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year001(100%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year110 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Azerbaijan have discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Azerbaijani law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1111
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1100
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Azerbaijani authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The lack of clear viable legal options for addressing international parental child abduction cases from the United States under Azerbaijani law makes it difficult for parents to resolve these cases.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Azerbaijani authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Azerbaijan to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  Bangladesh does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received two initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Bangladesh for which no addition al assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31, 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases1212
Total abduction cases2323
Abduction cases resolved during the year121 (50%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (50%)1

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in Bangladesh worked closely with the Department of State to discuss improvements to the resolution of pending abduction cases.  However, the options for resolving these cases under Bangladesh law are limited.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from

the Bangladesh authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Bangladesh judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Bangladesh authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

Bangladesh to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  While Belarus became party to the Convention in 1998, the Convention is not in force between Belarus and the United States.  As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Belarus have had discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Belarusian law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Belarusian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Belarusian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a Belarusian judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Belarusian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will engage with Belarusian government officials as appropriate regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Belgium since 1999. While the Department did not cite Belgium for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in 2020, the Department is concerned about the length of time it took for the Belgian authorities to file cases in court.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0022
New abduction cases2200
Total abduction cases2222
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year222 (100%)2

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Belgian Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.  However, the Department is concerned about delays in court filings.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0022
New cases filed with the FCA2200
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2222
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Belgian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Belgium routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Belgian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Belgian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.  The Department will continue to address areas of concern with the Belgium Central Authority.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Belize since 1989.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0035
New abduction cases3522
Total abduction cases3557
Abduction cases resolved during the year003 (60%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year001 (20%)1
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year351 (20%)3

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Belizean Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0035
New cases filed with the FCA3511
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year3546
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0013
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 25% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 31

days. As of December 31, 2020, there were no cases where the Belizean

authorities remained unable to initially locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Belizean judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Belizean authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Belizean Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  While Bolivia became a party to the Convention in 2016, the Convention is not in force between Bolivia and the United States. As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time. The Department is concerned about the delays in resolving cases.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year4545
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases4545
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (25%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year453 (75%)4

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in Bolivia periodically declined to communicate or work with the Department of State to resolve pending abduction cases.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1122
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2222
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year50% 50% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Bolivian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Bolivian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Bolivian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to engage with

Bolivian government officials regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Bulgaria since 2005.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1123
New abduction cases3433
Total abduction cases4556
Abduction cases resolved during the year221 (20%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year234 (80%)4

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Bulgarian Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1123
New cases filed with the FCA3433
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year4556
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was one month.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Bulgarian judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: While a court in Bulgaria ordered a return under the Convention, the Bulgarian authorities faced challenges with enforcement.  Decisions in

Bulgaria must be enforced by private bailiffs.  A private bailiff eventually enforced the return.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Bulgarian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.  The Department will engage with Bulgarian officials over concerns about enforcement of orders.

Country Summary:  Cambodia does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Cambodia have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Cambodian law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1111
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Cambodian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Cambodian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Cambodian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

Cambodia to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  Cameroon does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Cameroon for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31, 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases1200
Total abduction cases2311
Abduction cases resolved during the year121 (100%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year110 (0%)0

Central Authority:  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the competent authorities during the year.  Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Cameroonian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Cameroonian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Cameroonian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Cameroon to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Canada since 1988.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received ten initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Canada for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year15191115
New abduction cases20271925
Total abduction cases35463040
Abduction cases resolved during the year243119 (63%)25
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111511 (41%)15

Central Authority: The U.S. and the Canadian Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year15191115
New cases filed with the FCA19251722
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year34442837
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, ten abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. On average, it took ten days to

locate a child. As of December 31, 2020, there are no open cases where the authorities remain unable to initially locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Canada routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Canadian authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of four open access cases under the Convention in Canada. Two cases were filed in 2019. By December 31, 2020, two of the four cases (50 percent) had been resolved.  By December 31, 2020, two (50 percent) remained open. The two cases have been pending with the Canadian Central Authority for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Canadian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

    Central African Republic  

Country Summary:  The Central African Republic does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0012
Total abduction cases0012
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (100%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year000 (0%)0

Central Authority:  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the competent authorities during the year.  Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Central African authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Central African judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Central African authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage the Central

African Republic to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Chile since 1994.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Chile for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0013
Total abduction cases0013
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)3

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Chilean Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0013
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0013
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed.  On average, it took less than one week to locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases decided by the Chilean judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a

judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Chilean authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Chilean Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  China does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction. China was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2018 Annual Report.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year5779
New abduction cases4544
Total abduction cases9121113
Abduction cases resolved during the year230 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year7911 (100%)13

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in China worked closely with the Department of State to discuss improvements to the resolution of pending abduction cases.  However, the options for resolving these cases under Chinese law are limited.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2245
New cases filed with the FCA2367
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year451012
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months2245
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year50% 40% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Chinese authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases decided by the Chinese judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Chinese authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

China to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Colombia since 1996. While the Department did not cite Colombia for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in 2020, the Department is concerned about delays in the judicial process. Colombia was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2015 and 2016 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Colombia for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year22810
New abduction cases152022
Total abduction cases17221012
Abduction cases resolved during the year8117 (70%)8
Abduction cases closed during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year8103 (30%)4

Central Authority:  The U.S. and Colombian Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the

Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year22810
New cases filed with the FCA6811
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year810911
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0023
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year13% 22% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was three months and six days.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Colombian judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Colombian authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of three open access cases under the Convention in Colombia.  Of these, one case was opened in 2020. One case has been filed with the Colombian Central Authority. While no cases

had been resolved by December 31, 2020, two cases were closed for other reasons.

By December 31, 2020, one case remained open.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Colombian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  Côte d’Ivoire does not adhere to any protocols with respect

to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1112
New abduction cases1200
Total abduction cases2312
Abduction cases resolved during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year121 (100%)2

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in

Côte d’Ivoire have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve

pending abduction cases under Ivorian law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0012
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0012
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Ivorian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Ivorian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Ivorian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Cote d’Ivoire to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Croatia since 1991.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Croatian Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed. It took less than one week to locate this child.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Croatian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Croatian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Croatian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Cyprus since 1995.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2311
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases2311
Abduction cases resolved during the year120 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Cypriot Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2311
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2311
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Cypriot authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Cypriot judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Cypriot authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Cypriot Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and the Czech Republic since 1998.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1100
New abduction cases0023
Total abduction cases1123
Abduction cases resolved during the year112 (100%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year000 (0%)0

Central Authority:  International parental child abduction was part of our regular consular dialogue with the Government of the Czech Republic. There were no

new cases filed with the Czech Central Authority in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the Czech Central Authority during the year.  Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1100
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1100
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.”  In 2020, two abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Czech authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases

brought before the Czech Republic’s judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Czech authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Czech Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Democratic Republic of the Congo does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0012
New abduction cases1200
Total abduction cases1212
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year121 (100%)2

Central Authority:  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the competent authorities during the year.  Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Congolese authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Congolese judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Congolese authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage the Democratic

Republic of the Congo to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Denmark since 1991.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Denmark for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1200
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases1211
Abduction cases resolved during the year120 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Danish Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1200
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1211
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases decided by the Danish judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Danish authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Danish Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and the Dominican Republic since 2007. While the Dominican Republic worked with the Department to resolve abduction cases in 2020, the Department is concerned about delays in the judicial process.  The Dominican Republic was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern on noncompliance in the 2014-2018

Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received three initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to the Dominican Republic for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3322
New abduction cases2468
Total abduction cases57810
Abduction cases resolved during the year246 (60%)8
Abduction cases closed during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year222 (40%)2

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Dominican Republic Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1122
New cases filed with the FCA2233
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year3355
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 20% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take

all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring

about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, four abduction cases were

resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 52 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of the Dominican Republic routinely reached timely decisions.  However, delays by the Dominican Republic judicial authorities at the appellate level impacted a case during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Dominican Republic authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Dominican Central

Authority will continue the effective processing of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and El Salvador since 2007.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to El Salvador where no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases2211
Total abduction cases2211
Abduction cases resolved during the year221 (100%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year000 (0%)0

Significant Developments:  In late 2020, the U.S. Central Authority sent an access case to the Salvadoran Central Authority for the first time since the Convention entered into force between the United States and El Salvador.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Salvadoran Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention. There were no new cases filed with the Salvadoran Central Authority in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the Salvadoran Central Authority during the year. Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Salvadoran authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Salvadoran judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Salvadoran authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the Convention in El Salvador.  This case was opened in 2020. This case has been filed with the Salvadoran Central Authority.  By December 31, 2020, this case remained open.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Salvadoran Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and France since 1988.

Initial Inquiries:  In 2020, the Department received five initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to France for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year5900
New abduction cases0058
Total abduction cases5958
Abduction cases resolved during the year592 (40%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year003 (60%)5

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the French Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year5900
New cases filed with the FCA0035
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year5935
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, two abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a

child was 21 days.  As of December 31, 2020, there is one case where the French authorities remain unable to initially locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of France routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement: While a court in France ordered a return under the Convention, the

French authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the French Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

GuadeloupeThe U.S. Embassy in Nassau, Bahamas provides consular services to U.S. Citizens in Guadeloupe, including those related to international parental child abductions. In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority closed one abduction case in Guadeloupe. The Department recommends continued effective processing with

the French Central Authority and the resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  While Gabon became party to the Convention in 2010, the Convention is not in force between Gabon and the United States. As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the competent authorities during the year.  Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Gabonese authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Gabonese judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Gabonese authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will engage with Gabonese government officials regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Germany since 1990.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received five initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Germany for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2247
New abduction cases710710
Total abduction cases9121117
Abduction cases resolved during the year558 (73%)12
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year473 (27%)5

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the German Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2236
New cases filed with the FCA4758
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year69814
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0012
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 13% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, two abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. On average, it took less than one week to locate a child. As of December 31, 2020, there is one case where the German authorities remain unable to initially locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Germany routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement:  Decisions in Convention cases in Germany were generally enforced in a timely manner.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of three open access cases under the Convention in Germany.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the German Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  Ghana does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year24510
New abduction cases3600
Total abduction cases510510
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (20%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year5104 (80%)8

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Ghana have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Ghanaian law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1137
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1148
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 25% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Ghanaian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Ghanaian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a

judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Ghanaian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Ghana to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Greece since 1993.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Greece for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1122
New abduction cases1112
Total abduction cases2234
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year223 (100%)4

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Greek Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1122
New cases filed with the FCA1112
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2234
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year50% 33% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Greek judicial authorities at the appellate level impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Greek authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Greek Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary: The Convention has been in force between the United States and Guatemala since 2008. While the Department is not citing Guatemala for demonstrating patterns of noncompliance in 2020, the Department is concerned about delays in the judicial process. Guatemala was cited consecutively from 2012 to 2017.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received 2 initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Guatemala for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department in 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0048
Total abduction cases1159
Abduction cases resolved during the year002 (40%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year113 (60%)6

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Guatemalan Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1111
New cases filed with the FCA0048
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1159
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 1(20%)1

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Guatemalan authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Guatemalan judicial authorities impacted a case during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Guatemalan authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Guatemalan Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Honduras since 1994. While the Department did not cite Honduras for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in 2020, the Department is concerned about delays in the processing of cases by the Honduran Central Authority. Honduras was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the

2015 and 2016 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received six initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Honduras for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases1122
Total abduction cases1133
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year113 (100%)3

Central Authority:  While the U.S. and the Honduran Central Authorities have a cooperative relationship, delays in the processing of cases by the Honduran Central Authority have emerged as an area of concern.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1122
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1133
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a

child was 36 days.  As of December 31, 2020, there is one case where the

Honduran authorities remain unable to initially locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Honduras routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement: While a court in Honduras ordered a return under the Convention, the Honduran authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of two open access cases under the Convention in Honduras.  Both of these cases were opened in

2019.  Both cases have been filed with the Honduran Central Authority. One case

was filed with the Honduran Central Authority in 2020. By December 31, 2020, one of these cases (50 percent) had been resolved.  This case was resolved by voluntary means. By December 31, 2020, one case remained open.  No cases have been pending with the Honduran authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Honduran Central

Authority will continue the effective resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Hungary since 1988.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received two initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Hungary for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases1111
Total abduction cases1122
Abduction cases resolved during the year002 (100%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year110 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Hungarian Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from

Hungarian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Hungary routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Hungarian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Hungarian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  Indonesia does not adhere to any protocols with respect to

international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year8889
New abduction cases3434
Total abduction cases11121113
Abduction cases resolved during the year112 (18%)4
Abduction cases closed during the year221 (9%)1
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year898 (73%)8

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in Indonesia worked closely with the Department of State to discuss improvements to the resolution of pending abduction cases.  However, the options for resolving these cases under Indonesian law are limited.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year7766
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year7766
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months6655
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year86% 83% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, two abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Indonesian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Indonesian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Indonesian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

Indonesia to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  Iran does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction. The United States does not have diplomatic relations with Iran.  The Foreign Interests Section of the Swiss Embassy in Tehran performs limited consular services for U.S. citizens in country. Parents should consider the Department’s travel advisory carefully when contemplating travel to Iran.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year81068
New abduction cases1223
Total abduction cases912811
Abduction cases resolved during the year222 (25%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year112 (25%)2
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year694 (50%)6

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Department Recommendations:  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  While Iraq became party to the Convention in 2014, the Convention is not in force between Iraq and the United States.  As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time. The ability of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad to provide consular services to U.S. citizens throughout Iraq including services related to international parental child abduction is extremely limited given the security environment. Parents should consider the Department’s travel advisory carefully when contemplating travel to Iraq.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year5845
New abduction cases1100
Total abduction cases6945
Abduction cases resolved during the year242 (50%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year452 (50%)3

Central Authority:  The Department of State sends applications whenever diplomatic and security considerations permit, unless doing so would put parents or children at risk or is not consistent with the wishes of the left-behind parent. In

2020, the United States did not inform the Iraqi government of reported abduction cases.

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, two abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Iraqi authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  There is no clear legal procedure for addressing international parental child abduction cases from the United States under Iraqi law.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Iraqi authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Ireland since 1991.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Ireland for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0022
New abduction cases4411
Total abduction cases4433
Abduction cases resolved during the year112(67%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year221 (33%)1

Central Authority: The U.S. and the Irish Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0022
New cases filed with the FCA4411
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year4433
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 33% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a

child was 19 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Ireland routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement:  Decisions in Convention cases in Ireland were generally enforced in a timely manner.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of two open access cases under the Convention in Ireland.  Of these, no cases were opened in 2020. Both cases have been filed with the Irish Central Authority.  No new cases were filed in 2020.  By December 31, 2020, one access case had been resolved and one case remained open.  No access cases have been pending with the Irish authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Irish Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the

Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Israel since 1991. Statistics below are for Israel.  See separate notes for West

Bank and Gaza.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1511
New abduction cases61146
Total abduction cases71657
Abduction cases resolved during the year5122 (40%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year130 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year113 (60%)5

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Israel Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1511
New cases filed with the FCA51046
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year61557
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 27 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Israel routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement:  Decisions in Convention cases in Israel were generally enforced in a timely manner.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Israel Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

West Bank:  There are no protocols with respect to international parental child abduction that are operative in the West Bank. While the U.S. Embassy is able to provide limited consular services to U.S. citizens in the West Bank, including those related to international parental child abduction, fluctuating security conditions can make this difficult. Parents should consider the Department’s Travel Advisory carefully when contemplating travel to the West Bank. In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of six open abduction cases in the West Bank. Of these, none were initially opened with the U.S. Central Authority in 2020.  As of December 31, 2020, three cases were resolved. By December 31, 2020, three

cases remained open.  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Gaza:  There are no protocols with respect to international parental child abduction that are operative in Gaza. The U.S. Embassy is unable to provide consular services to U.S. citizens in Gaza, including services related to international parental child abduction, given the security environment.  Parents should consider the Department’s Travel Advisory carefully when contemplating travel to Gaza.  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of one open abduction case to Gaza.  As of December 31, 2020, this case remained open. The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Italy since 1995.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Italy for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3344
New abduction cases4411
Total abduction cases7755
Abduction cases resolved during the year331 (20%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year001 (20%)1
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year443 (60%)3

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Italian Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year3344
New cases filed with the FCA4411
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year7755
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year14% 20% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 56 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Italy routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement: While a court in Italy ordered a return under the Convention, the

Italian authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Italian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Jamaica since 2019.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Jamaica for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases2244
Total abduction cases2255
Abduction cases resolved during the year115 (100%)5
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year110 (0%)0

Significant Developments:  Jamaica promptly resolved a case through the judicial process, setting a positive momentum for future cases.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Jamaican Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1111
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1122
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, four abduction cases were

resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 130 days. It took one day to locate the child in one case, and eight months to locate a child in the other case.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Jamaica reached a timely decision.

Enforcement:  Decisions in Convention cases in Jamaica were generally enforced in a timely manner.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the Convention in Jamaica.  By December 31, 2020, one case remained open. One case has been pending with the Jamaican authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Jamaica Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Japan since 2014.  Japan was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2018 and 2016 Annual Reports for failure to enforce court orders to return a child to a left-behind parent in cases where the taking parent objected.  In 2020, there were no unenforced Convention court orders for return. The Department continues to work with Japan to resolve the nine pre-Convention abduction cases that remained open at the end of the year, all of which have been outstanding for many years.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received four initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Japan for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year4559
New abduction cases91479
Total abduction cases13191218
Abduction cases resolved during the year796 (50%)8
Abduction cases closed during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year596 (50%)10

Significant Developments:  New Hague Convention implementing legislation that went into effect April 1, 2020, led to improved execution of Hague return orders of abducted children. We will carefully monitor the situation for Japan’s continued and consistent enforcement of this legislation.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Japanese Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year4559
New cases filed with the FCA6968
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year10141117
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year  0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, three abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was seven days.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Japan routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement: While courts in Japan ordered returns under the Convention, in some cases the Japanese authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of 14 open access cases under the Convention in Japan. Of these, two cases were opened in 2020. All of these cases have been filed with the Japanese Central Authority. Two cases were filed in 2020. By December 31, 2020, two cases (13 percent) have been resolved and one case has been closed for other reasons. By December 31, 2020,

11 cases remained open. Ten cases have been pending with the Japanese authorities for more than 12 months.

Pre-Convention Cases:  At the end of 2020, nine pre-Convention abduction cases remained open in Japan. In 2020, two pre-Convention cases were resolved.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Japanese Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  Kenya does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Kenya for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31,

2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2333
New abduction cases3345
Total abduction cases5678
Abduction cases resolved during the year222 (29%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year345 (71%)5

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in

Kenya have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Kenyan law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1211
New cases filed with the FCA0033
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1244
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1200
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Kenyan authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  Acting in accordance with local laws, the Kenyan judicial authorities resolved abduction cases in a timely manner.

Enforcement: While domestic court orders in Kenya are generally enforced, in some cases the Kenyan authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Kenya to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and the Republic of Korea since 2013.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received two initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to the Republic of Korea for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year4544
New abduction cases3335
Total abduction cases7879
Abduction cases resolved during the year342 (29%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year445 (71%)7

Central Authority:  The United States and the Korean Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year4544
New cases filed with the FCA3324
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year7868
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0022
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 33% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 60 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of the Republic of Korea routinely reached timely decisions.  However, delays by the Korean judicial authorities at the appellate level impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: While a court in the Republic of Korea ordered a return under the Convention, the need for additional enforcement proceedings resulted in further delays for return.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Korean Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  Kuwait does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)0

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Kuwait have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Kuwaiti law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Kuwaiti authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Kuwaiti judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Kuwaiti authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Kuwait to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Latvia since 2007.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0013
Total abduction cases0013
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (100%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year000 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Latvian Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0013
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0013
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Latvian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Latvian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Latvian authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the Convention in Latvia. This case was opened in 2020. This case has been filed with the Latvian Central Authority. By December 31, 2020, this case remained open.  No case has been pending with the Latvian authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Latvian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  Lebanon does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction. In 2004, the United States and Lebanon signed a Memorandum of Understanding to encourage voluntary resolution of abduction cases and facilitate parental access to abducted children. Lebanon was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2015, 2016, and 2019 Annual Reports.

Initial Inquiries:  In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Lebanon for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31, 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year571011
New abduction cases7822
Total abduction cases12151213
Abduction cases resolved during the year241 (8%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year001 (8%)1
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year101110 (83%)11

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Lebanon have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Lebanese law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year4767
New cases filed with the FCA4444
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year8111011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months2367
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year25% 60% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate a child after the United States submitted a request for assistance.

Judicial Authorities:  While some abduction cases were resolved by the Lebanese courts, the lack of clear viable legal options for addressing international parental child abduction cases from the United States under Lebanese law may make it difficult for Lebanon to resolve these cases.

Enforcement: While domestic court orders in Lebanon are generally enforced, in some cases the Lebanese authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Lebanon to accede to the Convention.

Country Summary:  Libya does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.  The U.S. government does not have a diplomatic presence in Libya and therefore cannot provide protection or routine consular services to U.S. citizens in Libya, including in cases of international parental child abduction.  Parents should consider the Department’s travel advisory carefully when contemplating travel to Libya.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1123
New abduction cases1200
Total abduction cases2323
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year232(100%)3

Central Authority:  The Department of State sends applications whenever diplomatic and security considerations permit, unless doing so would put parents or children at risk or is not consistent with the wishes of the left-behind parent. In

2020, the United States did not inform the Libyan government of reported abduction cases.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Libyan authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Libyan judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Libyan authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  Malaysia does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in Malaysia worked closely with the Department of State to discuss improvements to the resolution of pending abduction cases.  However, the options for resolving these cases under Malaysian law are limited.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1111
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Malaysian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Malaysian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Malaysian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

Malaysia to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Malta since 2003.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases2300
Total abduction cases2311
Abduction cases resolved during the year121 (100%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year110 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Maltese Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Maltese authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Malta reached a timely decision.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Maltese authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Maltese Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Hague Abduction Convention has been in force between the United States and Mexico since 1991.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received 47 initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Mexico where no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year45684861
New abduction cases831245283
Total abduction cases128192100144
Abduction cases resolved during the year7212132 (32%)52
Abduction cases closed during the year881 (1%)2
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year486067 (67%)90

Significant Developments:  In 2020, the U.S. and the Mexican Central Authorities held numerous virtual meetings to address a range of issues affecting abduction cases in Mexico and also coordinated meetings with other counties to assist in improving the resolution of cases.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Mexican Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year45684861
New cases filed with the FCA56833655
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year10115184116
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months20242330
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year20% 27% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, 24 abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location:  In some cases, the competent authorities delayed taking appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed. The average time

to locate a child was 151 days.  The median time to locate a child was 31 days.  As

of December 31, 2020, there were 27 cases where the Mexican authorities were unable to initially locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Mexico routinely reached timely decisions.  However, delays by the Mexican judicial authorities at the appellat e level impacted cases during 2020. Delays were often related to the “amparo”, a constitutionally based injunction that suspends the effects of a lower court’s decision.

Enforcement: Decisions in Convention cases in Mexico were generally enforced in a timely manner.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of nine open access cases under the Convention in Mexico.  Of these, three cases were opened in

2020.  A total of six cases have been filed with the Mexican Central

Authority.  Two of these cases were filed in 2020.  By December 31, 2020, one case (11 percent) was resolved and one case was closed for other reasons.  The one resolved case was by a voluntary agreement between the parents.  By

December 31, 2020, seven of these cases remained open.  Four of these cases have been pending with the Mexican authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Mexican Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States

and Montenegro since 2006.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  While the U.S. and the Montenegro Central Authorities have a cooperative relationship, delays in communication about actions to resolve Convention cases are an area of continuing concern.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1111
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Montenegrin authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Montenegrin judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction need ed to be enforced by the Montenegrin authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Montenegrin Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention, and will work to address areas of concern.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Morocco since 2012. Morocco was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2018 Annual Report.  While the Department is not citing Morocco for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in 2020, the Department is concerned about the lack of a timely response from the Moroccan Central Authority to the requests of the U.S. Central Authority.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases5814
Total abduction cases6925
Abduction cases resolved during the year581 (50%)4
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (50%)1

Central Authority:  While the U.S. and the Moroccan Central Authorities have a cooperative relationship, delays in communication about actions to resolve Convention cases are an area of continuing concern.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1111
New cases filed with the FCA3600
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year4711
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities delayed taking appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed. The Department of State requested location assistance but the Moroccan authorities have not yet identified a location.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Moroccan judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Moroccan authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the Convention in Morocco. The case was opened in 2020.  This case has been filed with the Moroccan Central Authority. By December 31, 2020, this case remained open.  No cases have been pending with the Moroccan authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Moroccan Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

    Namibia  

Country Summary:  Namibia does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (100%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year110 (0%)0

Central Authority:  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020.  Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1111
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1100
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Namibian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Namibian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Namibian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Namibia to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and the Netherlands since 1990.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received three initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to the Netherlands for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0024
New abduction cases3312
Total abduction cases3336
Abduction cases resolved during the year002 (67%)4
Abduction cases closed during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year221 (33%)2

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Dutch Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0024
New cases filed with the FCA2212
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2236
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was seven days.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases decided by the Dutch judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Dutch authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of two open access cases under the Convention in the Netherlands.  Of these, one case was opened in

2020.  Both cases were filed with the Dutch Central Authority. One case was filed in 2020.  By December 31, 2020, one case was resolved and one case was closed for other reasons. By December 31, 2020, no cases remained open.  No cases have

been pending with the Dutch authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Dutch Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  While Nicaragua became party to the Convention in 2000, the Convention is not in force between Nicaragua and the United States.  As a

result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:   In 2020, the competent authorities in Nicaragua periodically declined to communicate or work with the Department of State to resolve pending abduction cases.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 00%

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Nicaraguan authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Nicaraguan judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Nicaraguan authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to engage with

Nicaraguan government officials regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  Nigeria does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2638
New abduction cases1211
Total abduction cases3849
Abduction cases resolved during the year003 (75%)5
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year381 (25%)4

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Nigeria have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Nigerian law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0014
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0014
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Nigerian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Nigerian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Nigerian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Nigeria to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and the Republic of North Macedonia since 1991.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The United States and North Macedonia’s Central Authorities

have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed.  It took 31 days to locate this child.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases decided by the North Macedonian judiciary or administrative authorities in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the North Macedonian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the North Macedonian Central Authority will continue the effective processing  and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Pakistan since October 1, 2020.  As of December 31, 2020 there were 17 pre- Convention cases open in Pakistan.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Pakistan for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31,

2020.

Significant Development:  In October 2020, Pakistan and the United States partnered under the Convention.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Pakistan Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases u nder the Convention.  There were no new cases filed with the Pakistan Central Authority in

2020, nor were there any cases on file with the Pakistan Central Authority during

the year. Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Pakistani authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Pakistani judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Pakistani authorities.

Pre-Convention Cases:  At the end of 2020, 17 pre-Convention abduction cases remained open in Pakistan.  In 2020, one pre-Convention case was resolved through voluntary means, and two pre-Convention cases were closed for other reasons.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Pakistani Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Panama since 1994. Panama was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2017 Annual Report.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1224
New abduction cases1200
Total abduction cases2424
Abduction cases resolved during the year002 (100%)4
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year240 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Panamanian Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1224
New cases filed with the FCA1200
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2424
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1200
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year50% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 78 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of Panama routinely reached timely decisions.  However, delays by the Panamanian judicial authorities at the appellate level impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Panamanian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Panamanian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States

and Paraguay since 2008.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases1100
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (100%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year110 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Paraguay Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed. It took two weeks to locate this child.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases

brought before or decided by the Paraguayan judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Paraguayan authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the

Convention in Paraguay.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Paraguay Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  While the Philippines became party to the Convention in

2016, the Convention is not in force between the Philippines and the United States. As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time. The United States is engaged in discussions with the Philippines government regarding the establishment of a treaty relationship pursuant to the Convention.  However,

the Department is concerned about the apparent lack of tangible progress towards domestic implementation of the Convention since 2016.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received four initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to the Philippines for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31, 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year11151115
New abduction cases4647
Total abduction cases15211522
Abduction cases resolved during the year463 (20%)5
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111512 (80%)17

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in the Philippines worked closely with the Department of State to discuss improvements to the resolution of pending abduction cases.  However, the options for resolving these cases under Philippines law are limited.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year812710
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year812710
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months71068
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year88% 86% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, two abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Philippines authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Philippines judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Philippines authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to engage with

Philippines government officials regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Poland since 1992.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Poland for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2212
New abduction cases1200
Total abduction cases3412
Abduction cases resolved during the year221 (100%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year120 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Polish Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2212
New cases filed with the FCA1200
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year3412
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Polish authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases decided by the Polish judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Polish authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Polish Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Portugal since 1988.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Portuguese Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed.  It took 20 days to locate this child.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Portuguese judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Portuguese authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Portuguese Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  Qatar does not adhere to any protocols with respect to

international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases1100
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority: The Department of State and the competent authorities in Qatar have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Qatari law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Qatari authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Qatari judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Qatari authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Qatar to accede to the Convention.

Country Summary:  While Russia became party to the Convention in 2011, the Convention is not in force between Russia and the United States. As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Russia for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

  Cases Children Cases Children 2019 2019 2020 2020 Abduction cases open at the start of the year 10 11 8 10 New abduction cases 7 9 8 11 Total abduction cases 17 20 16 21 Abduction cases resolved during the year 9 10 2 (12.5%) 3 Abduction cases closed during the year 0 0 0 (0%) 0 Abduction cases still open at the end of the year 8 10 14 18    

(87.5%)

Central Authority:  International parental child abduction was part of our regular consular dialogue with the Government of Russia. There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year6622
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year6622
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1222
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year16% 100% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Russian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  While some abduction cases were resolved by the Russian courts, the lack of clear legal options for addressing international parental child abduction cases from the United States under Russian law makes it difficult for parents to resolve these cases.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Russian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to engage with

Russian government officials regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  Saudi Arabia does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction. In 2017, the United States and Saudi Arabia signed a Memorandum of Understanding to encourage voluntary resolution of abduction cases.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2335
New abduction cases1211
Total abduction cases3546
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year001 (25%)2
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year353 (75%)4

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Saudi Arabia have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Saudi law, and the Saudi government took steps to resolve such cases.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2323
New cases filed with the FCA0023
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2346
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months2311
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 25% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Saudi authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases decided by the Saudi judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a

judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Saudi authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

Saudi Arabia to accede to the Convention.

Country Summary:  Senegal does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2335
New abduction cases1200
Total abduction cases3535
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (33%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year352 (67%)4

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Senegal have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Senegalese law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0035
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0035
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Senegalese authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Senegalese judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be

enforced by the Senegalese authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Senegal to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Serbia since 1991.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Serbian Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1111
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Serbian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Serbian judicial authorities at the appellate level impacted cases during 2020. An appellate court ordered a retrial of the case and remanded the case to the first instance court in 2020, but as of December 31,

2020, the case remained unresolved.

Enforcement:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be

enforced by the Serbian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Serbian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention. The Department will continue to address the areas of concern with the Serbian Central Authority.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Singapore since 2012.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Singapore for which no completed application was submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases1100
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Singaporean Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Singaporean authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Singaporean judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Singaporean authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the

Convention in Singapore. No new cases were filed in 2020.  By December 31,

2020, this case remained open.  This case has been pending with the Singaporean authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Singaporean Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Slovakia since 2001.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1122
New abduction cases1100
Total abduction cases2222
Abduction cases resolved during the year002 (100%)2
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year220 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and Slovak Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1122
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2222
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Slovak authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Slovak judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Slovak authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Slovak Central

Authority  will continue  the effective processing and resolution of cases under the

Convention.

Country Summary:  Somalia does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.  The U.S. Embassy in Mogadishu does not provide consular services, and the ability of the U.S. Embassy in Nairobi to provide consular services to U.S. citizens throughout Somalia, including services related to international parental child abduction, is extremely limited given the security environment. Parents should consider the Department’s travel advisory carefully when contemplating travel to Somalia.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases1311
Total abduction cases1311
Abduction cases resolved during the year130 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The Department of State sends applications whenever diplomatic and security considerations permit, unless doing so would put parents or children at risk or is not consistent with the wishes of the left-behind parent.  In

2020, the United States did not inform the Somali government of reported abduction cases.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Somali authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Somali judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Somali authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and South Africa since 1997.

Initial Inquiries:  In 2020, the Department received two initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to South Africa for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3411
New abduction cases1100
Total abduction cases4511
Abduction cases resolved during the year340 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the South Africa Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year3411
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year4511
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year25% 100% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 18 days.

Judicial Authorities:  While the judicial authorities routinely decided Convention cases in a timely manner, one decision issued in 2020 raised concerns regarding its compliance with the Convention.

Enforcement:  Decisions in Convention cases in South Africa were generally enforced in a timely manner.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the Convention in South Africa.  This case was opened in 2020. This case has been filed with the South African Central Authority. This case was filed in 2020. By December 31, 2020, this case remained open.  No access cases have been pending with the South African authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the South African Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Spain since 1988.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received two initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Spain for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1312
New abduction cases2311
Total abduction cases3623
Abduction cases resolved during the year240 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year122 (100%)3

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Spanish Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1312
New cases filed with the FCA2311
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year3623
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 60 days.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Spanish judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Spanish authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Spanish Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States

and Sri Lanka since 2008.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases1100
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year001 (100%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year110 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Sri Lankan Central Authorities have a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Sri Lankan authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Sri Lankan judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Sri Lankan authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Sri Lankan Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and St. Kitts and Nevis since 1995.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  While the U.S. and the St. Kitts and Nevis Central

Authorities have a cooperative relationship, delays in communication about actions to resolve Convention cases are an area of continuing concern.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 100% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed.  The average time to locate a child was

63 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the St. Kitts and Nevis judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the St. Kitts and Nevis authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the St. Kitts and Nevis Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  St. Vincent and the Grenadines does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  In 2020, the competent authorities in St. Vincent and the Grenadines worked closely with the Department of State to discuss improvements to the resolution of pending abduction cases.  However, the options for resolving these cases under St. Vincent and the Grenadines law are limited.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate a child after the United States submitted a request for assistance. The average time to locate a child was 132 days.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the St. Vincent and the Grenadines judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the St. Vincent and the Grenadines authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage St. Vincent and the Grenadines to accede to the Convention.

Country Summary:  Sudan does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1335
New abduction cases3610
Total abduction cases4947
Abduction cases resolved during the year143 (75%)4
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year351 (25%)3

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Sudan have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Sudanese law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0013
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0013
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, two abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Sudanese authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Sudanese judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Sudanese authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Sudan to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Sweden since 1989.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received four initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Sweden for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1134
New abduction cases5922
Total abduction cases61056
Abduction cases resolved during the year364 (80%)5
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year341 (20%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Swedish Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2334
New cases filed with the FCA4711
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year61045
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 25% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a

child was 16 days.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Swedish judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement:  Decisions in Convention cases in Sweden were generally enforced in a timely manner.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Swedish Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  Syria does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction. The U.S. government does not have a diplomatic presence in Syria and therefore cannot provide protection or routine consular services to U.S. citizens in Syria, including in cases of international parental child abduction.  Parents should consider the Department’s travel advisory

carefully when contemplating travel to Syria.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3423
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases3434
Abduction cases resolved during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year233 (100%)4

Central Authority:  The Department of State sends applications whenever diplomatic and security considerations permit, unless doing so would put parents or children at risk or is not consistent with the wishes of the left-behind parent. In

2020, the United States did not inform the Syrian government of reported

abduction cases.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Syrian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Syrian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Syrian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  Due to its unique status, Taiwan cannot become party to the Convention. Therefore, the remedies available under the Convention are not available with respect to Taiwan. The American Institute in Taiwan and Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office cooperate to encourage voluntary resolution of abduction cases and facilitate consular access to abducted children under a 2019 Memorandum of Understanding.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3445
New abduction cases2211
Total abduction cases5656
Abduction cases resolved during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year455 (100%)6

Central Authority:  The American Institute in Taiwan and the competent authorities in Taiwan have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Taiwan law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2323
New cases filed with the FCA0033
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2356
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months2323
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year100% 40% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Taiwan authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  Acting in accordance with local laws, the Taiwan judicial authorities resolved abduction cases in a timely manner.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Taiwan authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Thailand since 2016.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year3411
New abduction cases0044
Total abduction cases3455
Abduction cases resolved during the year231 (20%)1
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year114 (80%)4

Central Authority:  While the U.S. and the Thai Central Authorities have a cooperative relationship, delays in communication about actions to resolve

Convention cases are an area of continuing concern.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year3411
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year3411
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Thai authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Thai judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Thai authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Thai Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the

Convention.

Country Summary:  Tonga does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases0011
Total abduction cases0011
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year001 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Tonga have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Tongan law.  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the competent authorities during the year. Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Tongan authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Tongan judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Tongan authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Tonga to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  While Tunisia became party to the Convention in 2017, the Convention is not in force between Tunisia and the United States.  As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1212
New abduction cases0000
Total abduction cases1212
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year001 (100%)2
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year120 (0%)0

Central Authority:  International parental child abduction was part of our regular consular dialogue with the Government of Tunisia.  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the competent authorities during the year.  Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Tunisian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  Acting in accordance with local laws, the Tunisian judicial authorities resolved abduction cases in a timely manner.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Tunisian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will engage with Tunisian government officials regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Turkey since 2000. While the Department did not cite Turkey for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in 2020, the Department is concerned about delays in the judicial process, and the lack of legislation providing for the enforcement of Convention orders.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year6857
New abduction cases2422
Total abduction cases81279
Abduction cases resolved during the year350 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year003 (43%)3
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year574 (57%)6

Significant Developments:  Turkish courts issued Hague return orders for two long-standing cases.  As of December 31, 2020, the cases were in the enforcement process.

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the Turkish Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year6857
New cases filed with the FCA2422
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year81279
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months2413
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year25% 14% 

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 52 days.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Turkish judicial authorities at the appellate level impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: While courts in Turkey ordered returns under the Convention, in some cases the Turkish authorities faced challenges with enforcement.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Turkish Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention, and we will work to address our areas of concern.

Country Summary:  Uganda does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2311
New abduction cases1200
Total abduction cases3511
Abduction cases resolved during the year120 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year120 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities

in 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year2311
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year2311
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months1111
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year50% 100% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Ugandan authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Ugandan judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Ugandan authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will encourage Uganda to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States

and Ukraine since 2007.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0011
New abduction cases3300
Total abduction cases3311
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year220 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year111 (100%)1

Central Authority:  The U.S. and Ukrainian Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0011
New cases filed with the FCA1100
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1111
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after

a Convention application was filed.  It took less than one month to locate this child.

Judicial Authorities:  Delays by the Ukrainian judicial authorities impacted cases during 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Ukrainian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the Ukrainian Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and the United Kingdom since 1988.  The statistics below for 2019 include cases in the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda.  There were no new cases for any of

the other British Overseas Territories in 2020.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received six initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to the United Kingdom for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year101257
New abduction cases13171217
Total abduction cases23291724
Abduction cases resolved during the year141813 (76%)20
Abduction cases closed during the year440 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year574 (24%)4

Central Authority:  The U.S. and the UK Central Authorities have a strong and productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year111357
New cases filed with the FCA912811
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year20251318
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0011
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 8% 

Voluntary Resolution:  The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues. In 2020, six abduction cases were resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed.  The average time to locate a child was 18 days. As of December 31, 2020, there is one case where UK authorities remain unable to locate a child.

Judicial Authorities:  The judicial authorities of the UK routinely reached timely decisions.

Enforcement:  Decisions in Convention cases in the UK were generally enforced in a timely manner.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority acted on a total of 18 open access cases under the Convention in the UK.  Of these, ten cases were opened in 2020. A total of 13 cases have been filed with the UK Central Authority .  Eleven of the

13 cases were filed in 2020.  By December 31, 2020, five cases (38 percent) had

been resolved.  No access case has been resolved by a voluntary agreement between the parents.  By December 31, 2020, eight access cases remained open.

Department Recommendations:  The Department and the UK Central Authority will continue the effective processing and resolution of cases under the Convention.

Country Summary:  While Uzbekistan became party to the Convention in 1999, the Convention is not in force between Uzbekistan and the United States. As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year1111
New abduction cases0012
Total abduction cases1123
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year112 (100%)3

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Uzbekistan have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Uzbekistani law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0012
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0012
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Uzbekistani authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Uzbekistani judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Uzbekistani authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will engage with Uzbekistani government officials regarding potential partnership.

Country Summary:  The Convention has been in force between the United States and Venezuela since 1997.  On March 11, 2019, the U.S. Department of State announced the withdrawal of diplomatic personnel from U.S. Embassy

Caracas.  All consular services, routine and emergency, were suspended until

further notice at that time.  Parents should consider the Department’s Travel

Advisory carefully when contemplating travel to Venezuela.

Initial Inquiries:  In 2020, the Department received two initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Venezuela for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0000
New abduction cases1111
Total abduction cases1111
Abduction cases resolved during the year110 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year001 (100%)1
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year000 (0%)0

Central Authority:  The U.S. and Venezuelan Central Authorities have

a productive relationship that facilitates the resolution of abduction cases under the

Convention.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0011
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0011
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The competent authorities took appropriate steps to locate a child after a Convention application was filed.  The Department of State requested location

assistance but the Venezuelan authorities were unable to identify a location. The child was subsequently located in another country.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases decided by the Venezuelan judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Venezuelan authorities.

Access:  In 2020, the U.S. Central Authority had one open access case under the Convention in Venezuela.  This case was opened in 2018.  This case was filed with the Venezuelan Central Authority in 2018 and as of December 31, 2020, this case remained open.  This case has been pending with the Venezuelan authorities for more than 12 months.

Department Recommendations:  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  Vietnam does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.

Initial Inquiries: In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Vietnam for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31, 2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year2222
New abduction cases2223
Total abduction cases4445
Abduction cases resolved during the year222 (50%)3
Abduction cases closed during the year001 (25%)1
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year221 (25%)1

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Vietnam have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Vietnamese law.  There were no new cases filed with the competent authorities in 2020, nor were there any cases on file with the competent authorities during the year.  Additionally, there were no cases that were unresolved for more than 12 months.

Voluntary Resolution:  In 2020, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Vietnamese authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Vietnamese judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Vietnamese authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to encourage

Vietnam to join the Convention.

Country Summary:  Yemen does not adhere to any protocols with respect to international parental child abduction.  The U.S. government does not have a diplomatic presence in Yemen and therefore cannot provide protection or routine consular services to U.S. citizens in Yemen, including in cases of international parental child abduction.  Parents should consider the Department’s travel advisory carefully when contemplating travel to Yemen.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year4811
New abduction cases1213
Total abduction cases51024
Abduction cases resolved during the year480 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year112 (100%)4

Central Authority:  The Department of State sends applications whenever diplomatic and security considerations permit, unless doing so would put parents or children at risk or is not consistent with the wishes of the left-behind parent. In

2020, the United States did not inform the Yemeni government of reported abduction cases.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year1200
New cases filed with the FCA0000
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year1200
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Yemeni authorities.

    Yemen, continued  

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before or decided by the Yemeni judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Yemeni authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department recommends an emphasis on preventing abductions.

Country Summary:  While Zambia became party to the Convention in 2014, the Convention is not in force between Zambia and the United States.  As a result, the Convention is not available for resolving cases at this time.

Initial Inquiries:  In 2020, the Department received one initial inquiry from a parent regarding a possible abduction to Zambia for which no additional assistance was requested or necessary documentation was not received as of December 31,

2020.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases open at the start of the year0022
New abduction cases2200
Total abduction cases2222
Abduction cases resolved during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases closed during the year000 (0%)0
Abduction cases still open at the end of the year222 (100%)2

Central Authority:  The Department of State and the competent authorities in Zambia have regular and productive discussions on the best ways to resolve pending abduction cases under Zambian law.

 CasesChildrenCasesChildren
2019201920202020
Abduction cases filed with the FCA at the start of the year0000
New cases filed with the FCA0022
Total cases on file with the FCA during the year0022
Cases that have been unresolved for over 12 months0000
FCA caseload unresolved at the end of the year0% 0% 

Location: The Department of State did not request assistance with location from the Zambian authorities.

Judicial Authorities:  The United States is not aware of any abduction cases brought before the Zambian judiciary in 2020.

Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Zambian authorities.

Department Recommendations:  The Department will continue to engage with

Zambian government officials regarding potential partnership.

APPENDICES

CONVENTION ON THE CIVIL ASPECTS OF INTERNATIONAL CHILD ABDUCTION

CONVENTION ON THE CIVIL ASPECTS OF INTERNATIONAL CHILD ABDUCTION

(Concluded 25 October 1980)

The States signatory to the present Convention,

Firmly convinced that the interests of children are of paramount

importance in matters relating to their custody,

Desiring to protect children internationally from the harmful effects

of their wrongful removal or retention and to establish procedures to ensure their prompt return to the State of their habitual residence, as well as to secure protection for rights of access,

Have resolved to conclude a Convention to this effect, and have

agreed upon the following provisions –

CHAPTER I – SCOP E OF THE CO NVENTION

Article 1

The objects of the present Convention are –

a)   to secure the prompt return of children wrongfully removed to

or retained in any Contracting State; and

b)   to ensure that rights of custody and of access under the law of

one Contracting State are effectively respected in the other

Contracting States.

Article 2

Contracting States shall take all appropriate measures to secure

within their territories the implementation of the objects of the Convention. For this purpose they shall use the most expeditious procedures available.

Article 3

The removal or the retention of a child is to be considered wrongful where –

a)   it is in breach of rights of custody attributed to a person, an institution or any other body, either jointly or alone, under the law of the State in which the child was habitually resident immediately before the removal or retention; and

b)   at the time of removal or retention those rights were actually

exercised, either jointly or alone, or would have been so exercised but for the removal or retention.

The rights of custody mentioned in sub-paragraph a) above, may arise in particular by operation of law or by reason of a judicial or administrative decision, or by reason of an agreement having legal effect under the law of that State.

Article 4

The Convention shall apply to any child who was habitually resident

in a Contracting State immediately before any breach of custody or access rights. The Convention shall cease to apply when the child attains the age of 16 years.

Article 5

For the purposes of this Convention –

a)   “rights of custody” shall include rights relating to the care of the

person of the child and, in particular, the right to determine the child’s place of residence;

b)   “rights of access” shall include the right to take a child for a limited period of time to a place other than the child’s habitual residence.

II

CHAPTER II – CENTRAL AUTHO RITI ES

Article 6

A Contracting State shall designate a Central Authority to discharge

the duties which are imposed by the Convention upon such authorities.

Federal States, States with more than one system of law or States having autonomous territorial organisations shall be free to appoint more than one Central Authority and to specify the territorial extent of their powers. Where a State has appointed more than one Central Authority, it shall designate the Central Authority to which applications may be addressed for transmission to the appropriate Central Authority within that State.

Article 7

Central Authorities shall co-operate with each other and promote

co-operation amongst the competent authorities in their respective States to secure the prompt return of children and to achieve the other objects of this Convention.

In particular, either directly or through any intermediary, they shall

take all appropriate measures –

a)   to discover the whereabouts of a child who has been wrongfully

removed or retained;

b)   to prevent further harm to the child or prejudice to interested

parties by taking or causing to be taken provisional measures;

c)   to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an

amicable resolution of the issues;

d)   to exchange, where desirable, information relating to the social

background of the child;

e)   to provide information of a general character as to the law of

their State in connection with the application of the Convention;

f)    to initiate or facilitate the institution of judicial or administrative

proceedings with a view to obtaining the return of the child and, in a proper case, to make arrangements for organising or securing the effective exercise of rights of access;

g)   where the circumstances so require, to provide or facilitate the

provision of legal aid and advice, including the participation of legal counsel and advisers;

h)   to provide such administrative arrangements as may be necessary and appropriate to secure the safe return of the child; i)   to keep each other informed with respect to the operation of

this Convention and, as far as possible, to eliminate any obstacles to its application.

CHAPTER III – RETURN OF CHILD REN

Article 8

Any person, institution or other body claiming that a child has been

removed or retained in breach of custody rights may apply either to the Central Authority of the child’s habitual residence or to the Central Authority of any other Contracting State for assistance in securing the return of the child.

The application shall contain –

a)   information concerning the identity of the applicant, of the child

and of the person alleged to have removed or retained the child;

b)   where available, the date of birth of the child;

c)   the grounds on which the applicant’s claim for return of the child is based;

d)   all available information relating to the whereabouts of the child and the identity of the person with whom the child is presumed to be.

The application may be accompanied or supplemented by –

e)   an authenticated copy of any relevant decision or agreement;

f)    a certificate or an affidavit emanating from a Central Authority, or other competent authority of the State of the child’s habitual residence, or from a qualified person, concerning the relevant law of that State;

g)   any other relevant document.

Article 9

If the Central Authority which receives an application referred to in

Article 8 has reason to believe that the child is in another Contracting State, it shall directly and without delay transmit the application to the Central Authority of that Contracting State and inform the requesting Central Authority, or the applicant, as the case may be.

Article 10

The Central Authority of the State where the child is shall take or cause to be taken all appropriate measures in order to obtain the voluntary return of the child.

Article 11

The judicial or administrative authorities of Contracting States shall act expeditiously in proceedings for the return of children.

If the judicial or administrative authority concerned has not reached a decision within six weeks from the date of commencement of the proceedings, the applicant or the Central Authority of the requested State, on its own initiative or if asked by the Central Authority of the requesting State, shall have the right to request a statement of the reasons for the delay. If a reply is received by the Central Authority of the requested State, that Authority shall transmit the reply to the Central Authority of the requesting State, or to the applicant, as the case may be.

Article 12

Where a child has been wrongfully removed or retained in terms of

Article 3 and, at the date of the commencement of the proceedings before the judicial or administrative authority of the Contracting State where the child is, a period of less than one year has elapsed from the date of the wrongful removal or retention, the authority concerned shall order the return of the child forthwith.

The judicial or administrative authority, even where the proceedings

have been commenced after the expiration of the period of one year referred to in the preceding paragraph, shall also order the return of the child, unless it is demonstrated that the child is now settled in its new environment.

Where the judicial or administrative authority in the requested State has reason to believe that the child has been taken to another State, it may stay the proceedings or dismiss the application for the return of the child.

Article 13

Notwithstanding the provisions of the preceding Article, the judicial

or administrative authority of the requested State is not bound to order the return of the child if the person, institution or other body which opposes its return establishes that –

a)   the person, institution or other body having the care of the

person of the child was not actually exercising the custody rights at the time of removal or retention, or had consented to or subsequently acquiesced in the removal or retention; or

b)   there is a grave risk that his or her return would expose the child

to physical or psychological harm or otherwise place the child in an intolerable situation.

The judicial or administrative authority may also refuse to order the

return of the child if it finds that the child objects to being returned and has attained an age and degree of maturity at which it is appropriate to take account of its views.

In considering the circumstances referred to in this Article, the

judicial and administrative authorities shall take into account the information relating to the social background of the child provided by the Central Authority or other competent authority of the child’s habitual residence.

Article 14

In ascertaining whether there has been a wrongful removal or retention within the meaning of Article 3, the judicial or administrative authorities of the requested State may take notice directly of the law of, and of judicial or administrative decisions, formally recognised or not in the State of the habitual residence of the child, without recourse to the specific procedures for the proof of that law or for the recognition of foreign decisions which would otherwise be applicable.

Article 15

The judicial or administrative authorities of a Contracting State may,

prior to the making of an order for the return of the child, request that the applicant obtain from the authorities of the State of the habitual residence of the child a decision or other determination that the removal or retention was wrongful within the meaning of Article 3 of the Convention, where such a decision or determination may be obtained in that State. The Central Authorities of the Contracting States shall so far as practicable assist applicants to obtain such a decision or determination.

Article 16

After receiving notice of a wrongful removal or retention of a child in the sense of Article 3, the judicial or administrative authorities of the Contracting State to which the child has been removed or in which it has been retained shall not decide on the merits of rights of custody until it has been determined that the child is not to be returned

under this Convention or unless an application under this

Convention is not lodged within a reasonable time following receipt of the notice.

Article 17

The sole fact that a decision relating to custody has been given in or is entitled to recognition in the requested State shall not be a ground for refusing to return a child under this Convention, but the judicial or administrative authorities of the requested State may

take account of the reasons for that decision in applying this

Convention.

Article 18

The provisions of this Chapter do not limit the power of a judicial or

administrative authority to order the return of the child at any time.

Article 19

A decision under this Convention concerning the return of the child

shall not be taken to be a determination on the merits of any custody issue.

Article 20

The return of the child under the provisions of Article 12 may be

refused if this would not be permitted by the fundamental principles of the requested State relating to the protection of human rights

and fundamental freedoms.

CHAPTER IV – RIGHTS OF ACCESS

Article 21

An application to make arrangements for organising or securing the effective exercise of rights of access may be presented to the Central Authorities of the Contracting States in the same way as an application for the return of a child.

The Central Authorities are bound by the obligations of co-operation

which are set forth in Article 7 to promote the peaceful enjoyment of access rights and the fulfilment of any conditions to which the exercise of those rights may be subject. The Central Authorities shall take steps to remove, as far as possible, all obstacles to the exercise of such rights.

The Central Authorities, either directly or through intermediaries,

may initiate or assist in the institution of proceedings with a view to organising or protecting these rights and securing respect for the conditions to which the exercise of these rights may be subject.

CHAPTER V – GENERAL P ROVISIONS

Article 22

No security, bond or deposit, however described, shall be required to guarantee the payment of costs and expenses in the judicial or administrative proceedings falling within the scope of this Convention.

Article 23

No legalisation or similar formality may be required in the context of

this Convention.

Article 24

Any application, communication or other document sent to the Central Authority of the requested State shall be in the original language, and shall be accompanied by a translation into the official language or one of the official languages of the requested State or, where that is not feasible, a translation into French or English. However, a Contracting State may, by making a reservation in accordance with Article 42, object to the use of either French or English, but not both, in any application, communication or other

document sent to its Central Authority.

Article 25

Nationals of the Contracting States and persons who are habitually resident within those States shall be entitled in matters concerned with the application of this Convention to legal aid and advice in any other Contracting State on the same conditions as if they themselves were nationals of and habitually resident in that State.

Article 26

Each Central Authority shall bear its own costs in applying this

Convention.

Central Authorities and other public services of Contracting States shall not impose any charges in relation to applications submitted under this Convention. In particular, they may not require any payment from the applicant towards the costs and expenses of the proceedings or, where applicable, those arising from the participation of legal counsel or advisers. However, they may require the payment of the expenses incurred or to be incurred in

implementing the return of the child.

However, a Contracting State may, by making a reservation in

accordance with Article 42, declare that it shall not be bound to assume any costs referred to in the preceding paragraph resulting from the participation of legal counsel or advisers or from court proceedings, except insofar as those costs may be covered by its system of legal aid and advice.

Upon ordering the return of a child or issuing an order concerning

rights of access under this Convention, the judicial or administrative authorities may, where appropriate, direct the person who removed or retained the child, or who prevented the exercise of rights of access, to pay necessary expenses incurred by or on behalf of the applicant, including travel expenses, any costs incurred or payments made for locating the child, the costs of legal representation of the applicant, and those of returning the child.

Article 27

When it is manifest that the requirements of this Convention are not

fulfilled or that the application is otherwise not well founded, a Central Authority is not bound to accept the application. In that case, the Central Authority shall forthwith inform the applicant or the Central Authority through which the application was submitted, as the case may be, of its reasons.

Article 28

A Central Authority may require that the application be accompanied by a written authorisation empowering it to act on behalf of the applicant, or to designate a representative so to act.

Article 29

This Convention shall not preclude any person, institution or body who claims that there has been a breach of custody or access rights within the meaning of Article 3 or 21 from applying directly to the judicial or administrative authorities of a Contracting State, whether or not under the provisions of this Convention.

Article 30

Any application submitted to the Central Authorities or directly to the judicial or administrative authorities of a Contracting State in accordance with the terms of this Convention, together with documents and any other information appended thereto or provided by a Central Authority, shall be admissible in the courts or administrative authorities of the Contracting States.

Article 31

In relation to a State which in matters of custody of children has two or more systems of law applicable in different territorial units –

a)     any reference to habitual residence in that State shall be construed as referring to habitual residence in a territorial unit of that State;

b)     any reference to the law of the State of habitual residence shall

be construed as referring to the law of the territorial unit in that

State where the child habitually resides.

Article 32

In relation to a State which in matters of custody of children has two

or more systems of law applicable to different categories of persons, any reference to the law of that State shall be construed as referring to the legal system specified by the law of that State.

Article 33

A State within which different territorial units have their own rules of law in respect of custody of children shall not be bound to apply this Convention where a State with a unified system of law would not be bound to do so.

Article 34

This Convention shall take priority in matters within its scope over

the Convention of 5 October 1961 concerning the powers of authorities and the law applicable in respect of the protection of minors, as between Parties to both Conventions. Otherwise the present Convention shall not restrict the application of an international instrument in force between the State of origin and the State addressed or other law of the State addressed for the

purposes of obtaining the return of a child who has been wrongfully removed or retained or of organising access rights.

Article 35

This Convention shall apply as between Contracting States only to

wrongful removals or retentions occurring after its entry into force in those States.

Where a declaration has been made under Article 39 or 40, the reference in the preceding paragraph to a Contracting State shall be taken to refer to the territorial unit or units in relation to which this Convention applies.

Article 36

Nothing in this Convention shall prevent two or more Contracting

States, in order to limit the restrictions to which the return of the child may be subject, from agreeing among themselves to derogate from any provisions of this Convention which may imply such a restriction.

CHAPTER VI – FINAL CLAUSES

Article 37

The Convention shall be open for signature by the States which were Members of the Hague Conference on Private International Law at the time of its Fourteenth Session.

It shall be ratified, accepted or approved and the instruments of

ratification, acceptance or approval shall be deposited with the

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Article 38

Any other State may accede to the Convention.

The instrument of accession shall be deposited with the Ministry of

Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The Convention shall enter into force for a State acceding to it on the first day of the third calendar month after the deposit of its instrument of accession.

The accession will have effect only as regards the relations between the acceding State and such Contracting States as will have declared their acceptance of the accession. Such a declaration will also have to be made by any Member State ratifying, accepting or approving the Convention after an accession. Such declaration shall be deposited at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands; this Ministry shall forward, through diplomatic channels, a certified copy to each of the Contracting States.

The Convention will enter into force as between the acceding State and the State that has declared its acceptance of the accession on the first day of the third calendar month after the deposit of the declaration of acceptance.

Article 39

Any State may, at the time of signature, ratification, acceptance, approval or accession, declare that the Convention shall extend to all the territories for the international relations of which it is

responsible, or to one or more of them. Such a declaration shall take

effect at the time the Convention enters into force for that State.

Such declaration, as well as any subsequent extension, shall be notified to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Article 40

If a Contracting State has two or more territorial units in which

different systems of law are applicable in relation to matters dealt with in this Convention, it may at the time of signature, ratification, acceptance, approval or accession declare that this Convention shall extend to all its territorial units or only to one or more of them and may modify this declaration by submitting another declaration at any time.

Any such declaration shall be notified to the Ministry of Foreign

Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and shall state expressly the territorial units to which the Convention applies.

Article 41

Where a Contracting State has a system of government under which

executive, judicial and legislative powers are distributed between central and other authorities within that State, its signature or ratification, acceptance or approval of, or accession to this Convention, or its making of any declaration in terms of Article 40 shall carry no implication as to the internal distribution of powers within that State.

Article 42

Any State may, not later than the time of ratification, acceptance,

approval or accession, or at the time of making a declaration in terms of Article 39 or 40, make one or both of the reservations provided for in Article 24 and Article 26, third paragraph. No other reservation shall be permitted.

Any State may at any time withdraw a reservation it has made. The withdrawal shall be notified to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

The reservation shall cease to have effect on the first day of the

third calendar month after the notification referred to in the preceding paragraph.

Article 43

The Convention shall enter into force on the first day of the third

calendar month after the deposit of the third instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession referred to in Articles

37 and 38.

Thereafter the Convention shall enter into force –

(1)

for each State ratifying, accepting, approving or acceding to it subsequently, on the first day of the third calendar month after the deposit of its instrument of ratification, acceptance, approval or accession;

(2)  for any territory or territorial unit to which the Convention has been extended in conformity with Article 39 or 40, on the first day of

the third calendar month after the notification referred to in that

Article.

Article 44

The Convention shall remain in force for five years from the date of

its entry into force in accordance with the first paragraph of Article

43 even for States which subsequently have ratified, accepted,

approved it or acceded to it.

If there has been no denunciation, it shall be renewed tacitly every

five years.

Any denunciation shall be notified to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

of the Kingdom of the Netherlands at least six months before the

          expiry of the five year period. It may be limited to certain of the  

territories or territorial units to which the Convention applies.

The denunciation shall have effect only as regards the State which

has notified it. The Convention shall remain in force for the other

Contracting States.

Article 45

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands

shall notify the States Members of the Conference, and the States which have acceded in accordance with Article 38, of the following – (1)  the signatures and ratifications, acceptances and approvals referred to in Article 37;

(2)  the accessions referred to in Article 38;

(3)  the date on which the Convention enters into force in accordance with Article 43;

(4)  the extensions referred to in Article 39;

(5)  the declarations referred to in Articles 38 and 40;

(6)  the reservations referred to in Article 24 and Article 26, third paragraph, and the withdrawals referred to in Article 42;

(7)  the denunciations referred to in Article 44.

In witness whereof the undersigned, being duly authorised thereto, have signed this Convention.

Done at The Hague, on the 25th day of October, 1980, in the English and French languages, both texts being equally authentic, in a single copy which shall be deposited in the archives of the Government of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, and of which a certified copy shall be sent, through diplomatic channels, to each of the States

Members of the Hague Conference on Private International Law at

the date of its Fourteenth Session.

American Bar Association

Department of Justice

Office of Violence Against Women

Federal Bureau of Investigation

Hague Conference Permanent Bureau

Child Abduction Section

International Social Service (ISS-USA) National Center for Missing

and Exploited Children

The Office of the Refugee Resettlement Administration for Children and Families

Office of Victims of Crime (OVC) U.S. Customs and Border Protection

U.S. Department of Health and Human

Services—Resources  for Families

U.S. Department of State

Office of Children’s Issues

www.americanbar.org/ www.justice.gov/ovw www.fbi.gov/investigate/violent-crime/cac www.fbi.gov/contact-us

www.hcch.net/en/instruments/conventions/specialis ed-sections/child-abduction

www.iss-usa.org/

www.missingkids.com/

www.acf.hhs.gov/orr/about

www.ovc.gov/

www.cbp.gov/travel/international-child-abduction- prevention-and-return-act

www.childwelfare.gov/topics/systemwide/domviole nce/resources

www.travel.state.gov/content/childabduction/en.html

          Ukraine                                                   1 United Kingdom                                     3  
Alaska Yemen1Netherlands1
Canada1  Nigeria1
  Colorado Peru2
Arizona Argentina1Philippines2
Belize1Costa Rica2Russia2
Canada1India1Serbia1
India2Mexico3Spain1
Indonesia2Philippines1Sweden2
Jamaica1Slovakia1Syria2
Kuwait1  Trinidad and Tobago1
Mexico5Connecticut Turkey1
Peru1Albania1West Bank1
United Kingdom Canada1  
 2China1Georgia 
Arkansas France1Canada2
India1Germany2Costa Rica1
Mexico India1Dominican Republic1
 2Lebanon1India2
California North Macedonia1Indonesia1
Argentina1Pakistan1Ireland1
Australia4United Kingdom1Mexico2
Austria1  Montenegro1
Belarus1Delaware Pakistan1
Belgium1Egypt1Panama1
Belize1India1Senegal1
Brazil2  St. Vincent, Grenadines1
Canada2District of Columbia United Kingdom1
China1Panama1  
DRC1Philippines2Hawaii 
Dominican Republic3Russia1Greece1
Ecuador1United Kingdom1Singapore1
Egypt1  Thailand1
Germany1Florida   
Guatemala1Argentina1Idaho 
India26Bangladesh1Turkey1
Indonesia4Belize1United Kingdom1
Iran4Brazil3  
Israel1Bulgaria2Illinois 
Japan5Canada3Brazil1
Jordan1Chile1Bulgaria3
Korea, Republic of3Colombia8China3
Lebanon1Ecuador1Costa Rica1
Mexico32France2Ecuador1
Nicaragua1Gabon1Guatemala1
Nigeria1Germany2India6
Pakistan4Ghana1Kenya2
Peru1Guatemala1Mexico4
Philippines6Honduras1Uganda1
Russia4Hungary1United Kingdom1
Saudi Arabia1India1Vietnam1
Sweden1Italy1West Bank1
Taiwan1Jamaica2Zambia1
Thailand1Japan2  
Tonga1Lebanon1Indiana 
Tunisia1Mexico2Mexico1
          Philippines                                               1  
  Iowa   Yemen  1  Peru  1
Egypt1  Poland1
Lebanon2Minnesota Sweden1
  Canada1Trinidad and Tobago1
Kansas Germany1United Arab Emirates1
Pakistan1Ghana1  
Russia1Kenya2New Mexico 
  Portugal1Canada1
Kentucky Somalia1Central African Republic1
Spain1Thailand1Egypt1
  Turkey1Japan1
Louisiana Uzbekistan1Mexico2
Mexico1Venezuela1Taiwan1
Peru1    
Taiwan1Mississippi New York 
  Russia1Albania1
Maine   Australia2
United Kingdom1Missouri Brazil1
  India1Cambodia1
Maryland Jordan1Canada1
Australia1Mexico1China1
Bangladesh1Peru1Colombia1
Canada3United Arab Emirates1Costa Rica1
China1Vietnam1Croatia1
Czech Republic1West Bank1Cyprus1
Honduras1  Denmark1
India3Montana Dominican Republic1
Iran2Peru1Ecuador2
Japan2  Egypt1
Libya1Nebraska France1
Namibia1Brazil1Germany1
Pakistan2Mexico2Greece1
Paraguay1  Hungary1
Senegal1Nevada India6
Trinidad and Tobago1Australia1Iran1
  Belize1Ireland1
Massachusetts Japan1Israel2
Algeria1Mexico3Italy2
Czech Republic1Netherlands1Jamaica1
Dominican Republic2Thailand1Japan4
Germany1  Jordan1
Jordan1New Hampshire Kenya2
Lebanon1India1Lebanon1
Trinidad and Tobago1Turkey1Malaysia1
Vietnam1United Kingdom2Mexico3
    Morocco1
Michigan New Jersey Nigeria1
India3Canada1Pakistan3
Iraq1China1Peru1
Japan1Costa Rica1Romania1
Jordan1Egypt1Russia3
Latvia1Germany1Senegal1
Lebanon2Ghana1Slovakia1
Mexico1India9Sri Lanka1
Saudi Arabia1Japan2Sudan1
Taiwan1Pakistan3Sweden1
 United Kingdom1United Kingdom1
Syria1  West Bank1
United Kingdom2Puerto Rico   
Trinidad and Tobago1Netherlands1Utah 
United Arab Emirates1Peru1China1
    Guatemala1
North Carolina Rhode Island India1
Belgium1Canada1Mexico1
Brazil1  Russia2
Canada1South Carolina   
China1India2U.S. Virgin Islands 
Ecuador1Italy1Guadeloupe1
Egypt2Jordan2St. Kitts and Nevis1
Ghana1Saudi Arabia1  
Guatemala1Zambia1Virginia 
Honduras1  Bolivia1
India7South Dakota China1
Japan1Canada1Cote D’Ivoire1
Mexico1  Egypt3
West Bank1Tennessee Ghana1
  Canada2India9
North Dakota Egypt1Japan1
India1Germany1Lebanon1
  Mexico3Libya1
Ohio Trinidad and Tobago1Morocco1
Costa Rica1  Pakistan2
India1Texas Sudan1
Japan1Azerbaijan1Taiwan1
Pakistan1Belize1Trinidad and Tobago1
Qatar1Bolivia3Turkey2
South Africa1Brazil3Uzbekistan1
West Bank1Cameroon1Vietnam1
  Canada5  
Oklahoma Ecuador1Washington 
Lebanon1El Salvador1Canada1
  France1Egypt1
Oregon Gaza Strip1India4
Canada1Germany1Iraq1
Dominican Republic1Greece1Korea, Republic of2
Mexico2India7Mexico2
Thailand1Indonesia1Pakistan1
  Iran1Peru1
Pennsylvania Iraq1Philippines1
Brazil1Israel1Saudi Arabia1
Canada1Italy1  
Egypt4Kenya1West Virginia 
India2Korea, Republic of1Colombia1
Indonesia2Malta1Philippines1
Iraq1Mexico26  
Ireland1Nigeria1Wisconsin 
Israel1Pakistan1India1
Jamaica1Philippines1Indonesia1
Korea, Republic of1Russia2  
Lebanon1Sudan1  
Mexico1Trinidad and Tobago1  
Sudan1Turkey1  

Albania

#1 Pending 15 Months

Algeria

#1 Pending 22 Months

Argentina

#1 Pending 140 months

#2 Pending 31 Months

Austria

#1 pending 14 months

Belize

#1 pending 15 months

Bolivia

#1 pending 60 months

Brazil

#1 pending 141 months

#2 pending 95 months

#3 pending 86 months

#4 pending 73 months

#5 pending 57 months

#6 pending 28 months

#7 pending 25 months

#8 pending 16 months

#9 pending 14 months

Cambodia

#1 pending 60 months

China

#1 pending 60 months

#2 pending 60 months

#3 pending 19 months

#4 pending 21 months

Colombia

#1 pending 22 months

#2 pending 22 months

Costa Rica

#1 pending 28 months

#2 pending 15 months

Cyprus

#1 pending 26 months

Dominican Republic

#1 pending 20 months

Ecuador

#1 pending 41 months

Egypt

#1 pending 80 months

#2 pending 80 months

#3 pending 62 months

#4 pending 48 months

Germany

#1 pending 17 months

Ghana

#1 pending

Greece

#1 pending 37 months

Guatemala

#1 pending 89 months

India

#1 pending 60 months

#2 pending 60 months

#3 pending 60 months

#4 pending 60 months

#5 pending 60 months

#6 pending 60 months

#7 pending 60 months

#8 pending 60 months

#9 pending 60 months

#10 pending 60 months

#11 pending 60 months

#12 pending 60 months

#13 pending 60 months

#14 pending 60 months

#15 pending 60 months

#16 pending 60 months

#17 pending 60 months

#18 pending 60 months

#19 pending 55 months

#20 pending 55 months

#21 pending 55 months

#22 pending 55 months

#23 pending 55 months

#24 pending 55 months

#25 pending 48 months

#26 pending 48 months

#27 pending 48 months

#28 pending 29 months

#29 pending 29 months

#30 pending 29 months

#31 pending 29 months

#32 pending 12 months

#33 pending 12 months

#34 pending 12 months

#35 pending 12 months

#36 pending 12 months

#37 pending 12 months

#38 pending 12 months

#39 pending 12 months

#40 pending 12 months

#41 pending 12 months

#42 pending 12 months

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#46 pending 12 months

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#50 pending 12 months

#51 pending 12 months

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#58 pending 12 months

#59 pending 12 months

#60 pending 12 months

#61 pending 12 months

#62 pending 12 months

#63 pending 12 months

#64 pending 12 months

#65 pending 12 months

#66 pending 12 months

Indonesia

#1 pending 60 months

#2 pending 60 months

#3 pending 60 months

#4 pending 60 months

#5 pending 47 months

Ireland

#1 pending 18 months

Italy

#1 pending 19 months

Jordan

#1 pending 59 months

#2 pending 13 months

#3 pending 13 months

Korea, Republic of

#1 pending 21 months

#2 pending 17 months

Lebanon

#1 pending 36 months

#2 pending 36 months

#3 pending 19 months

#4 pending 19 months

#5 pending 19 months

#6 pending 19 months

Malaysia

#1 pending 60 months

Mexico

#1 pending 151 months

#2 pending 147 months

#3 pending 116 months

#4 pending 101 months

#5 pending 85 months

#6 pending 75 months

#7 pending 74 months

#8 pending 70 months

#9 pending 62 months

#10 pending 62 months

#11 pending 44 months

#12 pending 40 months

#13 pending 36 months

#14 pending 34 months

#15 pending 29 months

#16 pending 28 months

#17 pending 23 months

#18 pending 20 months

#19 pending 19 months

#20 pending 17 months

#21 pending 16 months

#22 pending 16 months

#23 pending 14 months

Montenegro

#1 pending 32 months

Peru

#1 pending 73 months

#2 pending 56 months

#3 pending 52 months

#4 pending 44 months

#5 pending 42 months

#6 pending 33 months

#7 pending 29 months

#8 pending 20 months

#9 pending 20 months

Philippines

#1 pending 60 months

#2 pending 60 months

#3 pending 60 months

#4 pending 50 months

#5 pending 47 months

#6 pending 47 months

Romania

#1 pending 26 months

Russia

#1 pending 60 months

#2 pending 60 months

Saudi Arabia

#1 pending 33 months

Serbia

#1 pending 24 months

South Africa

#1 pending 34 months

Sweden

#1 pending 38 months

Taiwan

#1 pending 60 months

#2 pending 60 months

Trinidad and Tobago

#1 pending 73 months

Turkey

#1 pending 30 months

Uganda

#1 pending 27 months

United Arab Emirates

#1 pending 60 months

#2 pending 46 months

United Kingdom

#1 pending 26 months

Argentina

#1 pending 27 months

Mexico

#1 pending 30 months

#2 pending 21 mon#3 pending 19 months

#4 pending 17 months

Norway

#1 pending 21months

Singapore

#1 pending 26 months

Venezuela

#1 pending 28 months

Australia

#1 LBP withdrew application

#2 Pending information requests

Brazil

#1 Pending information requests

Bulgaria

#1 Pending information requests

Canada

#1 Non-FCA entity submitting case

#2 Pending information requests

#3 Pending information requests

#4 Other

#5 Other

#6 Other

Costa Rica

#1 Other

Croatia

#1 Pending information requests

Dominican Republic

#1 Pending information requests

Ecuador

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

#2 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#3 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#4 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

France

#1 Pending information requests

Germany

#1 Mediation

Greece

#1 Non-FCA entity submitting case

Honduras

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

Israel

#1 Other

Italy

#1 Unable to locate the child and/or taking parent

Japan

#1 Non-FCA Entity Submitting Case

#2 Non-FCA Entity Submitting Case

#3 Non-FCA Entity Submitting Case

#4 Non-FCA Entity Submitting Case

#5 Non-FCA Entity Submitting Case

#6 Non-FCA Entity Submitting Case

Korea, Republic of

#1 Non-FCA Entity Submitting Case

Mexico

#1 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#2 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#3 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#4 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#5 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#6 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#7 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#8 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#9 Unable to locate child and/or taking

parent

#10 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#11 Administrative Processing by FCA

#12 Administrative Processing by FCA

#13 Administrative Processing by FCA

#14 Administrative Processing by FCA

#15 Administrative Processing by FCA

#16 Administrative Processing by FCA

#17 Administrative Processing by FCA

#18 Administrative Processing by FCA

#19 Administrative Processing by FCA

#20 Pending information requests

#21 Pending information requests

#22 Pending information requests

#23 Pending information requests

#24 Judicial delays

#25 Judicial delays

#26 Other

#27 Other

#28 Other

#29 Mediation

Morocco

#1 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

Portugal

#1 Pending information requests

Spain

#1 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

St. Kitts and Nevis

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

Thailand

#1 Non-FCA Entity Submitting Case

Trinidad and Tobago

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

#2 Pending information requests

Turkey

#1 Pending information requests

#2 Pending information requests

Ukraine

#1 Other

United Kingdom

#1 Unable to locate child and/or taking parent

#2 Other

Australia

#1 Mediation

#2 Mediation

Canada

#1 Non-FCA entity submitting case

#2 Pending information requests

#3 LBP withdrew application

#4 FCA rejected application

Colombia

#1 Other

Ireland

#1 Unable to locate the child and/or taking parent

Jamaica

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

Japan

#1 Non-FCA entity submitting case

#2 Non-FCA entity submitting case

#3 Mediation

#4 Mediation

#5 Mediation

#6 Mediation

#7 Mediation

#8 Mediation

#9 Other

#10 Other

#11 Other

#12 Other

Mexico

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

Morocco

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

Norway

#1 Pending information requests

Paraguay

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

South Africa

#1 Administrative Processing by FCA

United Kingdom

#1 Unable to locate the child and/or taking parent

#2 Administrative Processing by FCA

#3 Judicial Delays

#4 Mediation

#5 Mediation

#6 Mediation

#7 Mediation

#8 Other

#9 Other

#10 Other

COUNTRIES AND TERRITORIES WITH

ONE OR MORE ABDUCTION CASE IN 2020

Albania                                   No Protocol Algeria                                    No Protocol Argentina                                Convention Australia                                 Convention Austria                                    Convention Azerbaijan                              No Protocol Bangladesh                             No Protocol Belarus                                   No Protocol Belgium                                  Convention Belize                                     Convention Bolivia                                    No Protocol Brazil                                      Convention Bulgaria                                  Convention Cambodia                               No Protocol Cameroon                               No Protocol Canada                                   Convention CAR                                       No Protocol Chile                                       Convention China                                      No Protocol Colombia                                Convention Costa Rica                              Convention Côte d’Ivoire                          No Protocol Croatia                                    Convention Cyprus                                    Convention Czech Republic                      Convention DRC                                       No Protocol Denmark                                 Convention Dominican Republic              Convention Ecuador                                  Convention Egypt                                      No Protocol El Salvador                             Convention France                                     Convention Gabon                                     No Protocol Gaza Strip                               No Protocol Germany                                 Convention Ghana                                     No Protocol Greece                                    Convention Guatemala                              Convention Honduras                                Convention Hungary                                  Convention India                                       No Protocol Indonesia                                No Protocol Iran                                         No Protocol Iraq                                         No Protocol Ireland                                    Convention Israel                                       Convention Italy                                        Convention Jamaica                                   Convention Japan                                      Convention Jordan                                     No Protocol Kenya                                     No Protocol Korea, Republic of                 Convention Kuwait                                    No Protocol

Latvia                                     Convention Lebanon                                  No Protocol Liba                                        No Protocol Maaysia                                  No Protocol Mata                                       Convention Meico                                     Convention Montenegro                            Convention Morocco                                 Convention Namibia                                  No Protocol Netherlands              Convention Nicaragua                               No Protocol Nigeria                                    No Protocol North Macedonia                   Convention Pakistan                                  Convention Panama                                   Convention Paraguay                                 Convention Peru                                        Convention Philippines                              No Protocol Poland                                    Convention Portugal                                  Convention Qatar                                       No Protocol Romania                                 Convention Russia                                     No Protocol Saudi Arabia                          No Protocol Senegal                                   No Protocol Serbia                                     Convention Singapore                               Convention Slovakia                                 Convention Somalia                                  No Protocol South Africa                           Convention Spain                                      Convention Sri Lanka                                Convention St. Kitts and Nevis                 Convention St. Vincent, Grenadines         No Protocol Sudan                                      No Protocol Sweden                                   Convention Syria                                       No Protocol Taiwan                                    No Protocol Thailand                                 Convention Tonga                                     No Protocol Trinidad and Tobago              Convention Tunisia                                   No Protocol Turkey                                    Convention Uganda                                   No Protocol Ukraine                                   Convention United Arab Emirates             No Protocol United Kingdom                    Convention Uzbekistan                              No Protocol Venezuela                               Convention Vietnam                                  No Protocol West Bank                              No Protocol Yemen                                    No Protocol Zambia                                   No Protocol

i


Year published: 2021

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2021年10月10日 本会は、離婚を考えているある女性が、有名な悪徳離婚弁護士に相談に訪れた際のやり取りを、本サイト読者の方からの情報提供により入手しました。その内容を、以下の通り公開します。 Contents 1. 「別居すれば婚姻費用がもらえるよ」 2. 「子供を連れて黙って家を出るんだよ」 3. 「会えないのにお金出す馬鹿いる?」 4. 「どうして離婚したいのかをまだ聞いてない」 5. 「急いで別居、離婚までは長く」 6. 「賢い奥さんは別居するだけであとはほっとく」 7. 「子供をダシにして生きなきゃダメ」 8. 「調停の前は面会交流をブロックできない」 9. 「養育費の10%を5年分いただきます」 10. 「わざと階段から転げてみるとか」 「別居すれば婚姻費用がもらえるよ」 (20XX年X月X日、有名悪徳離婚弁護士の事務所にて) 弁護士:(相談者が書いた質問表を見ながら)離婚した後は、どういうふうにしていこうと?(※太字は弁護士の発言。以下同) 相談者:ちょっと、まだ……。(※細字は相談者の発言。以下同じ) 今住んでるところは賃貸? 賃貸です。 結婚期間が短いから、分けるものが何もないっていう離婚だよ。 そう思ってます。 離婚するときには、子供とお金に関することを決めるんだけど、子供の養育費はもらえます。これは裁判所で、お互いの年収でほぼ機械的に算出されるから。あなたの場合、慰謝料はないし、年金分割も微々たるもの。 もし離婚するってなったら、親権は私が取りたいんですけど。 彼、あんまり子育てしてないんじゃない? 仕事から帰ってくるのが遅くて。帰ると子供に構ってはくれるんですけど。

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