Migrants with children at the US-Mexico border fence (June 2021 photo)
The reunion of hundreds of children with their parents, who were separated when entering the United States, seems to be dragging on.
A spokesman for a family reunification task force set up by US President Joe Biden immediately after he took office in 2021 said on Thursday that almost 700 children have been reunited with their parents so far.
However, around 1,000 children are still separated.
According to the US Department of Homeland Security, almost 4,000 children have been separated from their families at the border with Mexico in recent years.
Almost three quarters of them had already reunited with their parents before the task force was set up.
The reunification process is currently running for about 148 of the remaining 1000 children.
The task force is to remain in place until all separated families have had the opportunity to be reunited.
Families can submit an application for this.
The number of identified families has recently increased steadily.
Separations stem from prosecutions of parents
In particular, under the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" migration policy, numerous families had been separated trying to cross the border with Mexico into the United States.
The action resulted from the criminalization of migrants promoted under the Trump administration, as a result of which numerous adults were prosecuted for illegally crossing the border.
Minor children of these people, who were not taken into custody themselves, were handed over to the Ministry of Health, which then in many cases organized custody with relatives or acquaintances of the families.
The task force set up under Biden to solve the cases celebrated its two-year anniversary on Thursday.
US Secretary of the Interior Alejandro Mayorkas announced when the figures were presented that work would continue on the "wounds" caused by the separations.
According to the AP news agency, numerous families have filed lawsuits against the US government because of the numerous separations between children and their parents.
The number of