Under a U.S. clampdown on illegal immigrants almost 2,000 children have been separated from their families and held in a converted Walmart store in Brownsville, Texas.
The children, aged between 10 and 17 have been held over a six-week period for illegal entry, immigration violations and possible criminal activity by the adult.
The “zero tolerance” policy was introduced by Attorney General, Jeff Sessions and means all cases of illegal entry are referred for criminal prosecution.
Usual procedure in the U.S. is that children aren’t detained with their parents because it is not the children who are charged with an offence.
Since the policy came into place in early May, stories of distressed children being pulled away from their parents have led to widespread criticism of the policy.
Protests have taken place across the U.S., many organized by the group “Families Belong Together” which aims to draw attention to the policy and change attitudes.
Earlier this week a number of House Democrats in Washington DC blocked of a city street to protest against the policy and raise awareness of the plight of the children.