100,000 children detained in migrant camps by United States, UN expert says

  • 11/19/2019 1:09 am ET Sneha Konda

Families outside a tent at a temporary migrant holding area set up by Customs and Border Protection under the Paso del Norte International Port of Entry between Juarez and El Paso, on March 27, 2019. By Ivan Pierre Aguirre for The Texas Tribune.

The United States has the highest child incarceration rate in the world, according to a UN study reported by NPR.

The report authored by Manfred Nowak, a human rights lawyer based in Vienna, Austria, “estimates that the U.S. is still holding more than 100,000 children in migration-related detention.”

This, he says, is “absolutely prohibited” by the Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC). The UNCRC aims to not just protect but promote the rights of ALL children around the world. Although the U.S. has signed this UN convention, it is the only UN member that is not party to it. Nowak told a news briefing,

“Of course, separating children, as was done by the Trump administration, from their parents and even small children at the Mexican-US border is absolutely prohibited by the Convention on the Rights of the Child. I would call it inhuman treatment for both the parents and the children.”

The high incarceration rates were followed by nations like Bolivia, or Botswana, or Sri Lanka, Nowak said.

The United States under President Trump’s administration has faced strong criticism for separating migrant children from their families at the border.

At these border facilities, migrant children have even begged for food, soap and medicines. In August this year, three of these children had died from flu — something that a simple vaccine could have prevented because the government was not vaccinating migrant families.

 

 

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