Trump puts mass deportation operation on hold

The president is also facing pressure to improve conditions at border detention centers, which one doctor compared to "torture facilities."
2:56 | 06/24/19

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Transcript for Trump puts mass deportation operation on hold
Jon Karl, thanks very much. Another headline out of Washington. It's the battle over immigration. In some of those detention centers holding children as young as 2 months old witnesses who have been inside are now using words like torture to describe the conditions there. This as president trump is putting on hold his plan for nationwide deportation raids. At least temporarily. Our senior congressional correspondent Mary Bruce joins us from capitol hill. Mary, you learned that speaker Nancy Pelosi got in his ear on this one. Reporter: Yeah, the speaker personally lobbied the president not to go through with this and holding off for now but trying to up the pressure giving lawmakers two weeks to a on immigration or else he says he will go ahead with those sweeping raids. But the pressure is also growing on the president now to do something about what is being described to us as absolutely dire conditions at these facilitys along the border. This morning, president trump's mass deportation operation on hold but not off the table. Just hours before I.C.E. Agents began nationwide raids to round up families who are in the U.S. Illegally trump tweeted at the request of Democrats, I have delayed the illegal immigration removal process for two weeks. ABC news learned the president called them off after a phone call with house speaker Nancy Pelosi. She urged him not to go through with it calling the raids heartless and warning they would inject terror into our communities. Trump's about-face comes as congress considers a plan to send $4.5 billion in humanitarian aid to the border where a record number of families are now being detained. The facilities overwhelmed. This felt worse than jail. Reporter: Speaking to ABC's Lana Zak Dr. Dolly Sevier said children are calling it comparable to torture facilities. They're placing them at increased risk for infection, disease and death. Reporter: She was granted access to the Ursula facility in McAllen, Texas, after a flu outbreak sent five up fans to intensive care and she witnessed a complete lack of basic sanitation. Babies drinking from unwashed bottles for days. Bright fluorescent lights on 24/7. Attorney Warren Binford says children are left to care for each other. They're sleeping on concrete blocks. There are open toilets in the room. There is no soap. These children are being held in a completely inappropriate facility. Reporter: But when asked about the conditions, the president blamed Democrats. We're doing a fantastic job under the circumstances. The Democrats aren't even approving giving us money. Where is the money? You know what, the Democrats are holding up the humanitarian aid. Reporter: Now we asked customs and border patrol to respond and tell us they have limited resources but, quote, work to provide the best care possible for those in their custody especially children and they insist that they take all allegations of civil rights abuses or mistreatment very seriously. Michael. All right, thank you so much, Mary.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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