The father of the 2-year-old Honduran girl featured on Time magazine and emblematic for the separation of immigrant children and parents, told The Washington Post Thursday the young girl was never separated from her mother.
Denis Javier Varela Hernandez told the Post he recognized his daughter on the cover of Time magazine looking up at President Donald Trump and feared she was separated from his wife. The photographer who took the picture, Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer John Moore, reported that after he took the photo, the child's mother picked her up and they got into a van.
Moore, along with many on social media, believed they would soon be separated and the child would join the 2,500 other immigrant children placed in detention centers while their parents faced prosecution.
But the mother and child are not separated, U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman confirmed. This news sparked outrage from the White House and conservative media such as Breitbart calling the photo of the little girl an example of fake news.
Varela disagreed with this rhetoric, telling the Post he is proud his daughter "represented the subject of immigration" and hopes her image will help enact policy change.
“This is the case for my daughter, but it is not the case for 2,000 children that were separated from their parents,” Varela told the Post.