A farmer in the US state of Texas has made a harrowing discovery on his ranch on the southern border with Mexico.
Five abandoned girls from Honduras and Guatemala were reportedly found on Sunday (local time) by 75-year-old Jimmy Hobbs while he was "doing the rounds of his property", according to local congressman Tony Gonzales.
"While we thank God they were found alive, these tragic scenes are happening more & more," he tweeted.
In a video posted to social media, Mr Hobbs described the moment he happened upon the young girls.
"About 8:30 in the morning, just driving along and then all of a sudden I see them, laying there, right beside the bank of the river," he said.
"Five little baby girls, all by themselves – hungry, crying, one didn't have any clothes on. One wasn't even old enough to walk."
Three of the girls, aged seven, three and two, are reportedly from Honduras while the other two are from Guatemala and are aged five and just 11-months-old.
Take a good hard look at the #BidenBorderCrisis These young girls were found outside a ranch near Quemado, Texas in #TX23. The Del Rio Sector border patrol tell me they are uninjured, healthy, and in good spirits. 🙏 @POTUS enough is enough let’s work together solve this crisis. pic.twitter.com/mt5P7ysN9g
— Tony Gonzales (@TonyGonzales4TX) May 9, 2021
Mr Hobbs said he called Border Patrol and got the girls some food and water.
“I don’t think they would have made it if I hadn’t found them,” he told congressman Gonzales.
"Because it got up to 103 yesterday [39 degrees Celsius]".
Biden under pressure on southern border
Republicans have been trying to put pressure on the Biden administration over migrants coming over the southern border after he wound back some of the harsher policies of the Trump administration.
Biden has exempted unaccompanied children from expulsion, allowing them to stay in the US while pursuing asylum claims. Families with young children are also often released into the community while their cases wind through the bottlenecked immigration court system.
The number of unaccompanied children encountered on the US border with Mexico in April eased from an all-time high a month earlier, while more adults were found coming without families, authorities said Tuesday (local time).
Authorities encountered 17,171 children travelling alone, down 9 per cent from 18,960 in March, according to US Customs and Border Protection, but still well above the previous high of 11,475 reported in May 2019 by the Border Patrol, which began publishing numbers in 2009.
Do you have a story tip? Email: email@example.com