Number of migrant children arriving in US jumped 800 percent in 2 months: report


​The number of unaccompanied migrant children traveling through Mexico to the US has increased more than 800 percent from January to March of this year, with 275 minors arriving a day on average, according to a report.

The number of illegal immigrant minors in Mexico heading to the US rose from 380 in January to 3,500 by the end of March, according to the United Nations Children’s Fund, the New York Times reported.

“I was heartbroken to see the suffering of so many young children, including babies, at the Mexican border with the U.S.,” Jean Gough, UNICEF’s regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean, told the newspaper after spending five days in Mexico visiting the border.​

UNICEF’s analysis was based on numbers provided by Mexico’s National Migration Institute and other official sources.​

Unaccompanied minors seen after a smuggler rowed them and other immigrants across the Rio Grande at the U.S.-Mexico border on April 9, 2021 in Roma, Texas.
Unaccompanied minors seen after a smuggler rowed them and other immigrants across the Rio Grande at the U.S.-Mexico border on April 9, 2021 in Roma, Texas.
John Moore/Getty Images

The Biden administration is struggling to handle the thousands of children crossing illegally into the US​ and overwhelming federal detention centers, causing them to burst beyond capacity.

Young unaccompanied migrants, from ages 3 to 9, watch television inside a playpen at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility in Donna, Texas.
Young unaccompanied migrants, from ages 3 to 9, watch television inside a playpen at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility in Donna, Texas.
AP Photo/Dario Lopez-Mills, Pool, File

And the dramatic surge isn’t expected to let up any time soon.  ​

US Customs and Border Protection said the influx of minors at the border will continue for the next six months and could swell to 26,000 a month in September, further straining federal facilities.  

The number of illegal immigrant minors in Mexico heading to the US rose from 380 in January to 3,500 by the end of March, according to the United Nations Children's Fund, the New York Times reported.
The number of illegal immigrant minors in Mexico heading to the US rose from 380 in January to 3,500 by the end of March, according to the United Nations Children’s Fund, the New York Times reported.
John Moore/Getty Images

UNICEF found that 30 percent of the migrants in many Mexican shelters are children and half of the kids made the trek without their parents. 

Unaccompanied minor migrants rest on the ground while waiting to be transported by the U.S. Border Patrols after crossing the Rio Grande River into the United States from Mexico in La Joya, Texas on April 7, 2021.
Unaccompanied minor migrants rest on the ground while waiting to be transported by the U.S. Border Patrols after crossing the Rio Grande River into the United States from Mexico in La Joya, Texas on April 7, 2021.
REUTERS/Go Nakamura

Most of them started out in Central America, where they are fleeing poverty, gang violence and natural disasters, the report said.

Migrant families wait to be escorted by a local church group to the location where they turn themselves in to the U.S. Border Patrol after crossing the Rio Grande on April 19, 2021.
Migrant families wait to be escorted by a local church group to the location where they turn themselves in to the U.S. Border Patrol after crossing the Rio Grande on April 19, 2021.
REUTERS/Go Nakamura

“Most of the shelter facilities I visited in Mexico are already overcrowded and cannot accommodate the increasing number of children and families migrating northward,” Gough said. 

Migrant families disembark from an inflatable raft after crossing the Rio Grande on April 20, 2021.
Migrant families disembark from an inflatable raft after crossing the Rio Grande on April 20, 2021.
REUTERS/Go Nakamura

Each day brings more images of children – some alone, some with adults – arriving illegally into the US. 

Photos from Reuters show children and adults on an inflatable boat arriving in the US near Roma, Texas, after crossing the Rio Grande river under cover of darkness early Tuesday.

Most of them started out in Central America, where they are fleeing poverty, gang violence and natural disasters, a UNICEF report stated.
Most of them started out in Central America, where they are fleeing poverty, gang violence and natural disasters, a UNICEF report stated.
REUTERS/Go Nakamura

The children wearing brightly colored hoodies jump off the boat while the toddlers among them are carried by women to shore. 

Asylum seeking unaccompanied minors, aged 11 and 15, from Honduras, await transport by U.S. Border Patrol agents
Asylum seeking unaccompanied minors, aged 11 and 15, from Honduras, await transport by U.S. Border Patrol agents
REUTERS/Adrees Latif

One photo shows a woman sitting on the bank with two young children in her lap.

Migrant families seen going to a U.S. Border Patrol station on April 20, 2021.
Migrant families seen going to a U.S. Border Patrol station on April 20, 2021.
REUTERS/Go Nakamura

In other images, a group of migrants huddle under a tree.

Others stand on the sandy bank, the adults holding the hands of the children, as they await to be processed by border officials. 

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