The US deports 120 rafters to Cuba and continues to search for 17 shipwrecked

The US deports 120 rafters to Cuba and continues to search for 17 shipwrecked

The Coast Guard This Friday, the United States repatriated 120 rafters, detained in their attempt to reach Florida by sea during the passage of Hurricane Ian. Despite facing winds of more than 200 kilometers per hour, the Cubans headed north in small craft boats.

A report issued by the Coast Guard detailed that the rafters rescued by the ship reliability they were intercepted at various points south of Key West, Boca Chica, Marquesas Keys, Islamorada and in Marathon.

aboard the reliabilitythe migrants received water, food and medical attention, the crew reported, who also noted that they had violated the prohibitions on navigation on the US coast established by the authorities.

At 8:00 a.m. on Friday, September 23, a small plane alerted the Coast Guard to the presence of a fishing boat 20 kilometers south of Key West. At the same distance from Boca Chica, at 11:50 am, the presence of another Cuban boat was reported.

Similar cases occurred throughout the past week 60 miles from Cayos Marquesas, where a raft was about to sink on Saturday the 24th; 12 miles from Islamorada, where a rustic sailboat was found that same day and another boat last Monday; and 18 miles from Marathon, where a raft was intercepted at 1034 hours.

The man accepted the risk of crossing with a rustic boat, but clarified that “freedom is worth more than the danger that we run”

In the midst of the hurricane and when it was beginning its approach to the Florida coast, a small boat with 27 Cubans was shipwrecked last Wednesday near Stock Island, neighboring Key West. First, four of the occupants who arrived by their own means were rescued and then five more were located in search operations on the high seas.

Meanwhile, the Coast Guard confirmed this Friday that it found the body of one of the 27 migrants, with whom there are two who died in the shipwreck. “We can only pray that our crews find the others so that their families and loved ones can rest,” Capt. Robert Kinsey said.

One of the Cubans rescued on Wednesday told the local television channel WPLG that they left the island last Friday and had been at sea for five days when the shipwreck occurred. He assured that they remained “two days and two nights near the coast of Cuba and they did not rescue us.” The man accepted the risk of crossing with a rustic boat, but clarified that “freedom is worth more than the danger that we run.”

US authorities have intercepted 6,182 rafters since October 1, 2021, the highest number in the last six years when 5,396 Cuban migrants were detained by the Coast Guard in 2016, and even exceeds the total number of rafters rescued in the five years. following.

Hurricane Ian first hit Puerto Rico on Sunday, September 25, and a day later hit western Cuba, leaving at least three confirmed deaths and damaging infrastructure.

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