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‘Imagine your own children there’: Grim reports mount from border detention camps


As more reports surfaced of inhumane conditions at the government’s migrant detention facilities, the movement to label them “concentration camps” picked up steam with backing from a major newspaper.

Dolly Lucio Sevier, a physician, and a group of lawyers visited border facilities in two Texas cities: McAllen and Clint. In an assessment obtained by ABC News, Lucio Sevier wrote that “the conditions within which they are held could be compared to torture facilities.” Lucio Sevier was granted access after lawyers expressed concern about a flu outbreak in the McAllen facility.

Lucio Sevier described the conditions as “extreme cold temperatures, lights on 24 hours a day, no adequate access to medical care, basic sanitation, water, or adequate food” and added that teens there said they had no access to hand-washing. Mothers of infants said the camps lacked facilities for washing bottles. Lucio Sevier said the conditions were “tantamount to intentionally causing the spread of disease.”

“It just felt, you know, lawless,” Lucio Sevier said in an interview with ABC News. “I mean, imagine your own children there. I can’t imagine my child being there and not being broken.”

On Monday, Rep. Veronica Escobar — who represents the El Paso, Texas, area — said that the government had moved most of the children from the Clint facility. It is unclear where they were moved.

President Trump has claimed he is simply continuing the policy of separating families begun by former President Barack Obama, but that is untrue. The Obama administration did occasionally split families but did not have a blanket policy to do so. The default separations began with the declaration of a “zero tolerance” policy in April 2018, under which any migrant who crossed the border illegally would be referred to criminal prosecution. Read more

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