Border Patrol in Del Rio encountered two five-year-old girls without adults crossing from Mexico into Texas over a two-day period.
Agents in the Del Rio sector of the southwest border, where the two girls were found, encountered over 160 unaccompanied migrant children between Feb. 4-11, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said in a Friday press release. Between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, 2021, border agents in the Del Rio sector encountered 2, 280 unaccompanied minors, compared to 1,305 during the same time period the previous year.
One of the five-year-old girls, a girl from Guatemala, was encountered on Feb. 7, while walking alone near Eagle Pass, according to CBP, who said she told agents she crossed the Rio Grande river by herself.
Border agents encountered the other young girl, who was from Honduras, on Feb. 9 with three other unaccompanied children, including two 16-year olds and a 14-year-old at the Del Rio Port of Entry. The three other children were from Mexico, and each child in the group had crossed the Rio Grande within an hour of each other before they were encountered.
President of the National Border Patrol Council in the Del Rio sector Jon Anfinsen told the Daily Caller News Foundation that agents continue to encounter children that have made the dangerous journey, but haven’t had such lucky outcomes as the two five-year-old girls did. He said the dangers of a child crossing alone could cost them their life.
“Border Patrol agents keep finding small children abandoned at the edge of the Rio Grande river, and we’re grateful that these two are safe,” Anfinsen said. “But there have been other children who were not so lucky. For years, agents have found children in the river after drowning while trying to cross, and it has to stop.”
“Unfortunately, the policies of this administration are only encouraging parents to send their children on the dangerous trek across the border,” he added. “Until the White House and Congress figure out how to stem the flow across the border and create an orderly process for those seeking asylum, current policies are only going to lead to more children tragically drowning.”
Unaccompanied children are brought to border patrol stations, where they are identified and receive health screenings, according to CBP. In Del Rio at the Uvalde Border Patrol Station , juvenile coordinators aid in the care and processing of the children. Once processing is completed, the juvenile coordinators support the transfer of the children to the Office of Refugee Resettlement and Health and Human Services.
CBP didn’t say if there was an effort to contact or locate the two young girls’ parents.
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