Cuba Illegal Exit
We run various sites in defense of human rights and need support to pay for more powerful servers. Thank you.

Cuban boatpeople run aground in Cayman Islands

Posted on Thursday, 11.17.11

Cuban boatpeople run aground in Cayman Islands
By Juan O. Tamayo

Seventeen Cubans fleeing their country were detained in the Cayman
Islands after their wooden sailboat ran aground in the Caribbean
territory, according to a Cayman government announcement.

The interception was the fifth such incident this year in the Cayman
Islands, compared to none in 2010, and appeared to affirm reports
indicating an increase in the number of Cubans trying to leave their
island illegally in recent months.

A British-run international banking center 125 miles south of Cuba, the
Caymans lie close to the route that Cubans leaving from their southern
coast would take in hopes that the currents and winds would take them to
Central America or Mexico. They would then by land to the U.S.

A Cayman government announcement Tuesday said immigration officials
detained the 16 men and one woman after their boat ran aground near the
island of Cayman Brac. A photo of their boat showed it was a small
wooden sailboat.

It added that the refugees were in good and will be transferred
to the archipelago's main island, Grand Cayman, for processing — most
likely meaning they will be returned to Cuba.

The last arrival of Cubans came in October, when a boat carrying 19 men
went aground in the Cayman's territorial waters. The men were detained
by immigration officials.

Until 2005, the Cayman's policy allowed territorial officials and
residents to help Cuban boatpeople continue their voyages by providing
them with water, gas and and even fixing their motors and sails.

But under the new policy, officials must seize the boats and detain the
Cubans if the vessels are not seaworthy. The Cubans can apply for
political asylum in the Cayman Islands, but most are repatriated to
their country.

Cuban migrants in seaworthy boats can continue their trips, without any
assistance, or voluntarily go ashore and face deportation back to Cuba.

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *