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Migrant Toddler Dies After Leaving US Detention Center, Texas Officials to Hold Investigation

The probe began on Thursday, after representatives for the family shared the deceased child's name -- which remains confidential -- with the authorities.

PTI

Updated:August 11, 2018, 7:48 AM IST
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Migrant Toddler Dies After Leaving US Detention Center, Texas Officials to Hold Investigation
(Image: Reuters)

Miami: Texas officials are investigating the reported death of a migrant child who had recently been held at a US detention center under allegedly "unsanitary conditions."

State health and human services officials told AFP they had opened an investigation into the allegations, which had first surfaced earlier this month.

The probe began on Thursday, after representatives for the family shared the child's name -- which remains confidential -- with the authorities.

The mother's attorneys said that they disclosed information about "a small child who tragically died after being detained by (US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE) in unsanitary conditions."

"We currently are assessing the case and have no further comments," the Arnold & Porter law firm added in a statement.

ICE said it was cooperating with the investigation.

Neither authorities nor attorneys provided details about the child's gender, nationality or cause of death.

The firm only indicated that the child had been detained at a facility in Dilley, southern Texas -- one of three ICE centers that house families.

Controversy over the rumored death erupted this week after The Dallas Morning News first reported the allegations on August 1.

Family centers house children only if they are part of a family unit.

In July, the three detention centers of this type held a total of 1,437 detainees. The total number of immigrants detained in all ICE facilities in the United States amounted to 44,210 on July 16.

A "zero tolerance" policy implemented earlier this year by President Donald Trump's administration, and since reversed, greatly increased arrests on the US-Mexico border.

It caused at one point more than 2,300 children to be detained without their parents, who were prosecuted for crossing the border even if they did so to seek asylum.

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