The picture of the Salvadoran father and his daughter lying face down in the water of the Rio Grande, a part of the US border with Mexico, is a heartbreaking testimony to the struggling.
For months, advocates have been warning that deaths at the border would improve, as migrants are pressured to cross in more dangerous areas by US policies that make it tougher for those seeking refuge to turn themselves in at ports of entry.
Oscar Alberto Martinez and his daughter, recognized by officers from El Salvador as Angie Valeria, drowned in the Rio Grande river on Sunday as they tried to slip into the US.
Their bodies had been discovered Monday close to Matamoros, across the river from Brownsville, Texas. The kid was two years old.
The photograph was taken by Julia Le Duc, who lives in Mexico.
In the picture, the young girl is tucked inside her father’s shirt; her right arm slung around his neck as they lie close to the shore. Their bodies have come to rest close to a river bank where five discarded beer cans and an empty soda bottle sit within the tall reeds.
The picture evoked recollections of a 3-year-old Syrian boy, Aylan Kurdi, whose body washed up on a seashore in Turkey. The iconic 2015 image of the drowned kid lying in the sand continues to stir dialogue over policies towards migrants.
The deaths of the father and youngster prompted Salvadoran Minister of Foreign Affairs Alexandra Hill to beg her countrymen to remain and work with the government because it tries to resolve the financial issues that cause many to look to migrate north.