GUATEMALA CITY (AP) — The U.S. Embassy found itself barraged with criticism Saturday after putting out a message on Twitter warning Guatemalans about the dangers of sending children as migrants to the United States.
“Take care of your children. Don’t put them at risk with the illegal #Migración,” the tweet read.
But the message also included a photograph of Felipe Gómez Alonzo, an 8-year-old Guatemalan boy who died in the custody of the U.S. Border Patrol.
That angered many people, and dozens took to social media to complain, with some saying the U.S. message could be interpreted as a threat to migrants. Hours after it was posted, the tweet was deleted from the official website of the U.S. Embassy.
The boy’s death was announced at Christmas 2018. He had been taken to the U.S. by his father, who had heard that it would be easier for him to migrate there if accompanied by a child. After they were detained, the boy began to have health problems and died while in the Border Patrol’s custody.