(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - In response to President Obama's request to Congress to provide more than $2 billion in new funds to control the surge of unaccompanied children at the U.S. and Mexico border and to grant powers to expedite deportations, Amnesty International's Managing Director of Government Relations, Adotei Akwei, issued the following statement:
"Many of these children fled dangerous situations, including child trafficking, abusive families and gang violence. When we treat these children harshly, they are further traumatized. The U.S. government should not compound the suffering of these children and ensure that their human rights are respected - children should only be detained in rare and exceptional circumstances, and their rights to due process in deportation proceedings should not be sacrificed in the rush to remove these children from the country."
Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 3 million members in more than 150 countries campaigning for human rights worldwide. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.