The United States Coast Guard intercepted 4,076 cuban rafters between October 1 and December 31, 2022, according to data from the entity itself.
In this way, in just three months of the current fiscal year, more than half the number of rafters captured in the entire previous fiscal year, between October 2021 and September 2022, has already been intercepted by US ships.
In that period, the number of Cuban migrants intercepted by the Coast Guard amounted to 6,182, a figure that is significantly higher than the 838 in fiscal year 2021 and just 49 in fiscal year 2020.
This evidences the growing flow of irregular migrants from Cuba to the United States through the waters of the Straits of Florida, a phenomenon parallel to the massive migratory wave of Cubans trying to reach US territory through Central America.
This Saturday, on the last day of 2022, the US authorities carried out the last return of the year of rafters intercepted at sea, under the agreements in force between the two countries.
BREAKING: @USCG Cutter Richard Etheridge’s crew repatriated 80 Cubans to #CubaSaturday. #DontTakeToTheSea
“These voyages are not only illegal, but also incredibly dangerous.” –Petty Officer 3rd Class Ryan Estrada
Read: https://t.co/AaV2PmkRdz@USEmbCuba pic.twitter.com/FpOjxCIjEb
—USCGSoutheast (@USCGSoutheast) December 31, 2022
This time there were 80 repatriated migrants, on board the Coast Guard Richard Etheridge. The same had been intercepted this week in several operations near the coast of Florida, according to the notified by the Coast Guard.
“These trips are not only illegal, but also incredibly dangerous,” said Petty Officer 3rd Class Ryan Estrada of the Coast Guard’s Seventh District.
“Sea and weather conditions can change at any time and cost you your life,” he added.
The Cuban authorities point to the Cuban Adjustment Act as a reason for its citizens to try to reach North American soil irregularly, by land or sea. This regulation allows access to permanent residence to those who remain at least one year in its territory.
To this should be added the serious economic crisis that the country is experiencing, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, US sanctions and internal difficulties and inefficiencies, a situation that motivates many people to leave the island in search of better living conditions. lifetime.