Migrant caravan: US to investigate after child dies in custody at border

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Migrants have tried to climb border fences to gain entry into the US (Getty Images)

An investigation has been launched after a seven-year-old girl died while in the custody of the US Border Patrol.

The Guatemalan child, named as Jakelin Caal Maquin, was detained last week after crossing the US-Mexico border with her father, officials say.

It was earlier reported that she died of dehydration, but border officials insist the pair had access to food and water while they were in detention.

A government watchdog will investigate before releasing a final report.

The death of the girl has bought renewed focus on President Donald Trump’s hard-line immigration policy, and onto the migrants who are travelling from Central America to the US border.

The migrants say they are fleeing persecution, poverty and violence in their home countries.

Many say they are aiming to settle in the US despite warnings that anyone found entering the country illegally will face deportation.

According to US Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the girl was apprehended with her father for illegally entering the country on the evening of 6 December.

She was then screened and found to have no health issues.

It says she was held in a location that had food, water and toilets before she was loaded onto a bus with her father ahead of a 94-mile (151km) journey to the nearest Border Patrol Station.

But the girl began vomiting while on the bus, officials say, and later stopped breathing. (Excerpts from BBC)

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