Border security agents in Texas have allegedly been ordered to push migrants back into the Rio Grande river and to withhold water.
Concerns about the “inhumane” treatment of migrants along the border with Mexico were outlined in an email from an unnamed trooper to the Texas Department of Public Safety.
In the email the trooper said they “were given orders to push the people back into the water to go to Mexico” and ordered not to give them water despite the “extreme heat”.
Officials in the Lone Star State have been criticized for deploying barrels wrapped in razor wire on the river, which the trooper described as “traps” in the email to a superior.
The email said the wire has increased the risk of drownings by forcing migrants into deeper parts of the river.
It detailed several incidents on the border in Eagle Pass last month, including one where a pregnant woman was trapped in wire while having a miscarriage.
In another, a four-year-old girl passed out from heat exhaustion after Texas National Guard soldiers pushed the group she was in back towards Mexico.
A man suffered a significant laceration to his leg when he tried to rescue his child from razor wire placed on a deterrence buoy, while a 15-year-old boy suffered a broken leg when he tried to cross a more dangerous part of the river away from the buoys.
It also said on 25 June troopers discovered a group of 120 people camped out along a fence set up along the river. The trooper stated the exhausted, hungry and tired group included several small children and babies who were nursing.
The email said the shift officer in command ordered troopers to “push the people back into the water to go to Mexico”.