FACT CHECK: Did A UN Chief Recently Say They Were ‘Deeply Shocked’ By Conditions At Biden-Era Migrant Detention Facilities?

Elias Atienza | Senior Reporter

A post shared on Facebook claims a United Nations chief said they were “deeply shocked” by the conditions at migrant detention facilities under President Joe Biden’s administration.

Verdict: False

The pictured article dates back to 2019, when former President Donald Trump was in office. The U.N. official mentioned in the article made the comment about migrant detention conditions under the Trump administration.

Fact Check:

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said earlier this month that the U.S. was seeing the biggest migrant surge in two decades at the U.S.-Mexico border, Reuters reported. Over 5,700 migrant children were in U.S. Customs and Border Protection custody on Sunday, according to CNN.

The Facebook post attempts to claim a U.N. chief said they were “deeply shocked” by the conditions at Biden-era border detention facilities. It includes a screen grab of a Bing.com link displaying The Washington Post headline “Border detention centers: UN chief ‘deeply shocked’ by conditions.”

“Hey Joe…For God’s sake wake up and fix this NOW!!! President Trump NEVER, EVER treated any human beings as inhumanely as YOU are treating these people,” the Facebook user wrote. “YOU are responsible for this. YOU are caging kids. And congratulations, YOU have actually ‘deeply shocked’ the UN.”

However, the pictured Washington Post article dates back to 2019, when Trump was president. The article reports U.N. High Commission for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet said in July 2019 that she was “appalled” by migrant detention conditions under the Trump administration.

“Clearly, border management measures must comply with the State’s human rights obligations and should not be based on narrow policies aimed only at detecting, detaining and expeditiously deporting irregular migrants,” she said at the time, according to The Washington Post. (RELATED: Does This Image Show Migrants In A Holding Facility During The Biden Administration?)

While Biden and his administration have faced criticism amid the surge of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border, Check Your Fact hasn’t found any major media outlets reporting about a “UN chief” saying they were “deeply shocked” by the conditions. When Bachelet commented on the migrant detention center conditions in 2019, UN News published an article about her remarks; so far, UN News has not published anything to that effect about Biden-era detention facility conditions.

The Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees and other U.N. agencies in February began registering asylum seekers at an encampment in Matamoros, Mexico, for potential entry to the U.S., according to the Associated Press and UN News.

Elias Atienza

Senior Reporter
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