Children are heard crying and calling out for their parents in recently released audio from inside a detention facility where they are being held as their parents await prosecution.
The audio, posted on YouTube by ProPublica, features several children, including a 6-year-old girl named Allison Kimena Valencia Madrid, who was separated from her mother last week.
Throughout the nearly eight-minute clip recorded at an unidentified location, Madrid and other children are heard crying and talking to border patrol agents and a consular.
“Don’t cry,” a border patrol agent can be heard saying before a child says, “I want to go with my aunt.”
“You’re going to get there. Look, she will explain it and help you,” the border patrol agent says, referring to the consular.
The consular is then heard saying, “I’m going to take you to speak with the person from your consulate, ok?”
“At least can I go with my aunt? I want her to come,” the child says.
Later in the audio, the border patrol agent says, “She’ll (the consular) help you call your aunt, if you have her number, so you can talk to your aunt,” to which the child replies, “I have her number.”
In another part of the video, another border patrol agent can be heard saying, “well, we have an orchestra here, right?” referring to the crying children.
According to reports, the Trump administration's zero-tolerance policy has resulted in at least 2,000 children being separated from their parents.
Listen to the ProPublica audio in the player below:
Meanwhile, on their website, US Customs and Border Protection details what happens to the children once in custody.
While in the care of the US Department of Health and Human Services, the Office of Refugee Resettlement begins the process of finding a sponsor for the child in order to discharge children from federal custody.
According to US Customs and Border Protection, a sponsorship program exists that allows a sponsor to take custody of children.
According to CBP, the sponsor can be a parent, adult sibling, relative or appropriate home that meets the criteria.
According to the agency, a parent who is prosecuted and later released can be a sponsor. CBP says that, in 2017, 90 percent of children were released to a sponsor who were either parents or close relatives.
For more information from CBP click here.