Child immigrant whose photo went viral is being detained with her mother in Texas

The two-year-old child and her mother were detained together in a Texas facility

Chris Riotta
New York
Friday 22 June 2018 20:25 BST
A two-year-old Honduran asylum seeker cries as her mother is searched and detained near the US-Mexico border
A two-year-old Honduran asylum seeker cries as her mother is searched and detained near the US-Mexico border ( (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images))

A photo of the toddler was shared across the web and used on the recent cover of TIME alongside an image of Donald Trump, who appeared to be looking down on her.

The child’s picture quickly became synonymous with outrage over the administration’s “zero tolerance” policy which separated families at the border, but Honduran deputy foreign minister Nelly Jerez confirmed in a Reuters interview she had actually been kept with her mother after the two were detained by US officials.

Trump's US immigration policy explained

Denis Valera, who said he was the girl's father, said: “If they are deported, that is OK as long as they do not leave the child without her mother.”

“My daughter has become a symbol of the ... separation of children at the US border. She may have even touched President Trump’s heart,” Mr Valera said. “I am waiting to see what happens with them.“

The photo was used as the cover image of a Facebook donation campaign to reunite separated immigrant families, which raised over $17m (£12.8m) in just a few days, and broadcast on major news networks throughout the weeks.

Mr Trump then signed an executive order on Wednesday allowing families to remain together after being detained at the border and as they go through asylum proceedings.

“We're going to have strong, very strong borders, but we’re going to keep the families together,” the president said while signing the order. “I didn’t like the sight or the feeling of families being separated.”

Thousands of children were separated from their families during the six-week period of the policy being in place, and sent to youth detention centers throughout the country. Images, videos and audio recordings showed children in cages and wailing for their parents.

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