MIAMI — The Coast Guard Cutter Charles David Jr. repatriated 14 Cuban migrants Monday to Bahia de Cabañas, Cuba.
This repatriation is the result of an at-sea migrant interdiction in the South Florida Straits. The Coast Guard helped secure the U.S. border and prevented this sea voyage from ending in tragedy.
“We discourage anyone from taking to the sea and attempting to reach U.S. soil illegally – they are risking their lives with very little chance of success,” said Capt. Mark Gordon, chief of enforcement for the Coast Guard 7th District. “Navigating the Florida Straits can be extremely dangerous for the unprepared on illegal voyages and often leads to injury or death.”
Once aboard a Coast Guard cutter, all migrants receive food, water, shelter and basic medical attention.
Since Oct. 1, at least 1,178 Cubans attempted to migrate to the U.S. via the maritime environment compared to 7,411 in fiscal year 2016. These statistics represent the total number of at-sea interdictions, landings and disruptions in the Florida Straits, the Caribbean and Atlantic.
The cutter Charles David Jr. is a 154-foot fast response cutter homeported in Key West.