By NAN Staff Writer
News Americas, MIAMI, FL, Fri. Jan. 22, 2016: Three hundred and sixty-nine Cubans have been nabbed by the U.S. Coast Guard trying to enter the U.S. illegally in just 20 days since the start of 2016.
In the first five days of January 2016, 176 Cuban migrants attempted to reach U.S. shores. On January 8th 2016, the Coast Guard repatriated 216 Cuban migrants to Bahia de Cabañas, Cuba as a result of 18 separate interdictions at sea in the south Florida Straits.
On January 14th, the Coast guard repatriated 169 from nine separate interdictions.
Since Oct. 1, the Coast Guard 7th District estimates that 1,942 Cubans have attempted to illegally migrate to the U.S. These numbers represent the total number of at-sea interdictions, landings and disruptions in the Florida Straits, the Caribbean and Atlantic.
The Coast Guard says it has observed a steady increase in illegal maritime migration attempts from Cuba to the Southeastern U.S. since the U.S. announcement of improved diplomatic relations with Cuba in December 2014, nearly 13 months ago.
“Immigration policies have not changed and we urge people not to take to the ocean in unseaworthy vessels,” commented Capt. Mark Fedor, Coast Guard 7th District chief of response. “It is illegal and extremely dangerous.”