It was bound to happen sooner or later. All those people crossing through the desert and over rough terrain in Mexico, somebody was going to die due to the conditions. Unfortunately, the victim is a seven-year-old girl. She died of shock and dehydration hours after crossing the border into the United States.
The Guatemalan girl, who arrived in the US last week as part of a group of migrants, died of dehydration and shock, the Washington Post reports.
AP news agency quotes border officials as saying she had not had food or water for several days.
News reports are billing this death as the girl was in Border Patrol custody when she died. However, no one dies of dehydration in seven hours. It takes days. Her survival once she reached the US would have been questionable at best.
The US Border Patrol confirmed that an accompanied girl aged seven had died after experiencing fever and seizures while in its custody for eight hours on Thursday of last week.
The girl, whose nationality was not given, was flown to a hospital in El Paso where she suffered cardiac arrest and died within 24 hours.
A Department of Homeland Security spokesperson sent condolences to the girl’s relatives, saying US Border Patrol border “always takes care of individuals in their custody and does everything in their power to keep them safe”.
“Unfortunately, despite our best efforts and the best efforts of the medical team treating the child, we were unable to stop this tragedy from occurring,” the spokesperson added.
“Once again, we are begging parents to not put themselves or their children at risk attempting to enter illegally.”
And that is the tragedy of this story. This girl did not have to die. The journey the caravan and other migrants have been taking is too arduous for a child. Even if the people really are fleeing persecution at home, the desert with no food or water is no place to drag kids.