8th immigrant dies while in custody of US border agency

Posted by News Express | 10 March 2020 | 1,044 times

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A young immigrant woman from Guatemala, who was held in a U.S. detention facility for months, died in a Texas hospital on Sunday, according to an American news outlet.

Citing a source familiar with the matter, BuzzFeed News said the 22-year-old woman had been arrested by border patrol officials in early September and passed her initial asylum screening test.

Her death is the eighth in Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) custody this year. The cause behind her death remains unknown.

According to the source, the Guatemalan woman was taken from ICE facility to a hospital in Oklahoma, where she had a gallbladder surgery two days later.

She was later taken to another detention facility in Texas. On Feb. 18, officials took her to a hospital in Texas for abdominal pain treatment and died there Sunday.

ICE procedures have long been criticized by U.S. lawmakers, Democrats in particular. In December, the House Oversight and Reform Committee announced it opened an investigation into the medical care of immigrant detainees.

In 2019, Customs and Border Patrol reported nearly 860,000 illegal border crossings.

Politico magazine reported 22 deaths in ICE custody between 2013 to 2018.

Meanwhile, DNA sampling rule went into effect on Monday, a controversial move which allows agents to collect DNA from immigrants who cross the border illegally and are held at immigration detention facilities around the country.

Civil rights groups have long slammed the harsh practices of ICE and poor medical conditions at its facilities as well as the new DNA rule, claiming that it unjustly targets illegal immigrants.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) called it a "xenophobic program."  (Anadolu Agency)




Source: News Express

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