Crying girl not separated from mom – dad
THE Honduran toddler pictured sobbing in a pink jacket before US President Donald Trump on an upcoming cover of Time magazine was not separated from her mother at the US border, according to a man who says he is the girl’s father.
The photograph, taken at the scene of a border detention by Getty Images photographer John Moore, became one of the iconic images in the flurry of media coverage about the separation of families by the Trump administration.
Dozens of newspapers and magazines around the globe published the picture, swelling the tide of outrage that pushed Trump to back down on Wednesday and say families would no longer be separated.
“My daughter has become a symbol of the separation of children at the US border. She may have even touched President Trump’s heart,” Denis Valera said.
Valera said the little girl and her mother, Sandra Sanchez, had been detained together in the Texas border town of McAllen, where Sanchez applied for asylum.
Honduran Deputy Foreign Minister Nelly Jerez confirmed Valera’s version of events.
Varela said he was awestruck and pained when he first saw the photo of his crying daughter on TV. “Seeing what was happening to her in that moment breaks anyone’s heart.”
The photo was used on a Facebook fund-raiser that drew about $17 million (nearly R229m) in donations from close to half a million people for the Refugee and Immigrant Centre for Education and Legal Services, a Texas-based organisation that provides legal defence services to immigrants and refugees.
The Trump administration’s “zero-tolerance” immigration policy led to separation of 2 342 children from their parents at the US-Mexico border between May 5 and June 9.