Coast Guard repatriates 23 Cuban migrants

Southeastern Coast Guard News
MIAMI — Crewmembers aboard the Coast Guard Cutter William Flores repatriated 23 Cuban migrants to Bahia de Cabañas, Cuba, Wednesday.

This repatriation is a result of two separate interdiction cases.

Between July 19 and 22, Coast Guard crewmembers worked alongside Customs and Border Protection agents to stop the illegal immigration of Cuban migrants into the United States. During routine patrols, Customs and Border Protection maritime patrol aircrafts detected and reported rustic vessels headed northbound in the Florida Straits.

The crews aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Nantucket and boat crews from Coast Guard Station Marathon and Islamorada responded to these reports and safely interdicted and embarked the migrants to be transferred to the William Flores for repatriation.

“Migrant operations are unique in that they are both a law enforcement and safety of life at sea mission,” said Capt. Mark Fedor, Coast Guard 7th District Chief of Enforcement. “Patrolling the Straits of Florida is a major undertaking and we frequently work closely with Customs Border Protection for both detection and interdiction.”

Once aboard a Coast Guard cutter, all migrants receive food, water, shelter and basic medical attention.

The Coast Guard Cutter William Flores is a 154-foot Fast Response Cutter, homeported in Miami.

The Coast Guard Cutter Nantucket is a 110-foot Island Class patrol boat, homeported in St. Petersburg, Fla.

The Sentinel Class Fast Response Cutters are designed to conduct maritime drug interdiction, alien migrant interdiction, search and rescue, national defense, homeland security, living marine resources and other Coast Guard missions. This class of patrol boat is capable of deploying independently to execute Coast Guard missions and prevent potential threats from approaching our shores and offers vastly improved capabilities over the aging 110-foot Island class patrol boats it replaces. The Fast Response Cutter is part of the Coast Guard’s layered approach to maritime security that includes the National Security Cutter and the Offshore Patrol Cutter.

For more information on how to legally immigrate to the U.S., call U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) at 1-800-375-5283 or visit the USCIS website at www.uscis.gov.

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