Border Patrol head says agency did all it could to save kids

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The head of Customs and Border Patrol mentioned his brokers did all the things they could for the 2 younger migrant kids who died whereas in authorities custody this month — deaths which have been “devastating” for the agency.

“It’s been over a decade since we’ve had a child die anywhere in our processes,” CBP Commissioner Kevin McAleenan mentioned on ABC’s “This Week.” “What I can tell you about these two cases … is that our agents did everything they could as soon as these children manifested symptoms of illness to save their lives.”

Felipe Gomez Alonzo, 8, died at a New Mexico hospital on Christmas Eve after he and his father had been detained every week whereas making an attempt to cross the border in El Paso, Texas.

The medical expert mentioned the boy had influenza B.

On Dec. 9, Jakelin Caal died at a hospital in El Paso simply days after she and her father had been amongst a gaggle of migrants stopped at a border crossing in New Mexico.

Both kids had been from Guatemala.

McAleenan mentioned immigration is a “multi-faceted problem that requires a multi-faceted solution.”

“We … need to invest in Central America,” he mentioned on ABC, feedback at odds with President Trump, who has referred to as for reducing off help to Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.

“The State Department’s announcement of an unprecedented increase in aid, I think, is a tremendous step forward. Our green shoots of progress, both on security and the economic front in Central America, we need to foster that and help improve the opportunities to stay at home,” he mentioned.

Trump in a tweet on Friday instructed he would shut the southern border if Congress doesn’t fund his barrier wall and referred to as for reducing off help to the Central American international locations.

“Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador are doing nothing for the United States but taking our money,” Trump wrote. “We will be cutting off all aid to these 3 countries — taking advantage of U.S. for years!”

Sen. Lindsey Graham, who is anticipated to be the following chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, mentioned he’ll maintain hearings on the kids’s deaths.

“I’m going to hold hearings on the deaths of these two children and the policies that entice people to come,” the South Carolina Republican mentioned Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “One of the mothers of these two children was not seeking asylum, she was just trying to come here to find a job,” he added.

Brooklyn Rep. Hakeem Jeffries mentioned accountability for the deaths of Jakelin and Felipe rests with the Trump White House.

“[The] Trump administration bears blame to the extent that the buck stops at the top,” the Democrat mentioned on ABC’s “This Week.”

“That was unacceptable, un-American, and unconscionable, and we need to do better,” he added.

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