Ben Carson Making Surprise Trip to Jordan to Tour Refugee Camp on 'Fact-Finding' Mission

PHOTO: Republican presidential candidate, Dr. Ben Carson speaks at a rally in this Nov. 23, 2015 file photo in Pahrump, Nev.PlayJohn Locher/AP Photo
WATCH Ben Carson In A Minute

Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson has traveled to a refugee camp in Jordan on a "fact finding and information gathering mission," a campaign official told ABC News.

The visit marks the first time one of the 2016 candidates has visited such a camp since the refugee crisis began this year.

The campaign official told ABC News that the goal of the trip for Carson -- who has made controversial comments about refugees -- is to listen and meet with people in the region to get a better understanding of the refugee crisis and foreign policy dynamics in the region.

Carson, who left last night for the trip and will stay until Sunday, posted a Thanksgiving message on his official Twitter account Thursday and made no mention of the trip.

The campaign official said they didn't intend for the trip to gain publicity, so they didn't give a head's up. They will not be releasing photos from the trip until Saturday.

The trip comes after a recent spate of criticisms for Carson's alleged lack of foreign policy experience.

He also came under fire after comparing the need for screenings of refugees to protecting a child from a rabid dog.

“For instance if there’s a rabid dog running around the neighborhood, probably not going to assume something good about that dog and you’re going to want to put your children away,” Carson said in response to an ABC News question regarding whether Christian organizations should be helping refugees.

Get real-time updates as this story unfolds. To start, just "star" this story in ABC News' phone app. Download ABC News for iPhone here or ABC News for Android here.