5th migrant child dies while in US custody
A 16-year-old Guatemalan died Monday at a border crossing in South Texas, becoming the fifth child to die since December when he was under the responsibility of the US government.
T he Customs and Border Protection Service said in a statement that border guards had apprehended the teenager on May 13 in the Rio Grande Valley. The cause of his death is unknown at the moment.
The agency did not explain why the teenager had been detained for a week, but said that he should be transferred to a youth facility run by social services.
Federal law requires the Department of Homeland Security to send minors unaccompanied by a parent or legal guardian to social services within 72 hours of finding that the child is alone.
Similar cases have occurred in the last few months.
A 2-year-old child died last week after being arrested with his mother by border guards. According to the authorities, the child was taken to a hospital the same day that his mother indicated that he was ill.
Another 16-year-old Guatemalan died on April 30, after being hospitalized in the intensive care unit several days before his death. He had fallen ill during his detention in a center run by social services.
After the death of two 7- and 8-year-old migrant children in December, the Department of Homeland Security ordered medical examinations for all children in her custody.
Customs and Border Protection Acting Commissioner John Sanders said in a statement that his agency was “saddened by the tragic loss of this young man,” adding that the health, safety and treatment of people in his custody are important.
On the Trump administration side, officials said a “break point” had been reached in the immigration detention system, as the number of parents and children crossing the border significantly exceeds the capacity The establishments.
The border authorities have published photos of adults and children in small military-style tents, on the grass and on the sidewalk in front of two of its checkpoints. The US government has recently installed a tent near a gate that can accommodate 500 people. He announced his intention to offer another.