(CBS Newspath) — Hundreds of families embraced amid the Rio Grande River on June 19 along the U.S.-Mexico border to meet for a few minutes with their loved ones they have not seen for years.
For three minutes, Jaqueline Sosa emotionally hugged her sister and nephew whom she had not seen for three years.
“I didn’t tell her much, I just hugged her, and that’s all. I hugged her and told her that I loved her very much and loved them very much,” Sosa said.
Cecilia Perez went with 13 members of her family to the border to reunite with her nieces and nephews and sisters who have been living in the United States for 18 years.
“We can’t see them because they cannot come to Mexico. We hope they will be able to visit their land soon. I feel very happy and excited,” said Perez.
In the last eight years “Hugs Not Walls” event allows Mexican immigrants with irregular status and unable to return to Mexico an opportunity to meet with their families for a few minutes on the riverbed that marks the frontier.
The event is hosted by the Border Network for Human Rights. This year almost 200 families attended the reunion.
After speeches from the organizers, both sides rushed together for three minutes of tearful hugs, embraces, and exciting face-to-face conversations.
Those moments were fleeting however and they separated again amid tears and sadness hoping their paths will someday cross again.