Immigration authorities released a group of Cubans who were in deportation proceedings after their identities were inadvertently revealed to the Cuban government, despite having sought political refuge in South Florida.
The problem began on November 28 when the Department of Homeland Security published on its website, also accidentally, the identities of hundreds of immigrants of various nationalities detained while awaiting deportation. For privacy reasons, the disclosure of identities caused a serious problem that forced the authorities to apologize.
But, on December 7, the matter worsened when an immigration official coordinated by telephone with the Cuban authorities the deportation of a group of islanders and revealed the names of some who had applied for political asylum in the United States. This, from the perspective of Washington and members of the Cuban community, could jeopardize the security of these people if they are deported to the Island.
Three days ago the immigration authorities they sent letters to the Cubans saying that, for now, the deportation was suspended and the cases would be reviewed. In this way, a group of detainees in an immigration prison in Broward County, north of Miami, were able to meet with their families this Thursday at the end of the day.
OnCuba spoke today Friday with Josefina Valdés, who received a nephew, who was detained, at her home. “He still doesn’t believe what has happened. From prison, which lasted 90 days; the release and now come to spend the end of the year with us, ”he said.
The nephew, who did not want to identify himself because “he still has to wait for the hearing with a judge,” told the relatives that having requested political asylum “he knew that if he returned he would go to jail again.”
Immigration considers not deporting Cubans who have applied for asylum
Several press outlets in South Florida spoke with relatives of other released. They say the same thing, adding that other Cubans who saw their identities exposed are still in jail.
The Immigration department has not provided further details, nothing more than confirming the release of the group, but has not specified how many remain in prison.
Nor have they clarified in what circumstances and why the names of the possible deportees who had requested asylum were revealed to the Cuban authorities.