Coast Guard repatriates 260 Haitians to Haiti

Two small boats from Coast Guard Cutter Diligence interdict Haitian migrants off Cuba's coast, Sept. 18, 2021. The Coast Guard repatriated 260 migrants. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)

Two small boats from Coast Guard Cutter Diligence interdict Haitian migrants off Cuba’s coast, Sept. 18, 2021. (U.S. Coast Guard photo)

MIAMI — Coast Guard Cutter Resolute’s crew repatriated 260 Haitians to Haiti Friday following two at-sea interdictions off Haiti and Cuba.

During a routine patrol,  Coast Guard Cutter Diligence’s crew interdicted a 35-foot sail freighter, Friday, at approximately 5:30 a.m., with 77 people aboard about 20 miles south of Cuba. They were brought aboard the cutter due to the vessel being overloaded and it was later destroyed as a hazard to navigation.

Subsequently, Coast Guard Cutter Resolute interdicted a 55-foot sail freighter with 183 people aboard, Wednesday, at approximately 4 p.m., about 36 miles off Cap Du Mole, Haiti. This vessel was also destroyed as a hazard to navigation.

No injuries or significant medical concerns were reported among the migrants.

The Coast Guard routinely returns persons interdicted at sea aboard unseaworthy vessels to their country of origin to prevent the loss of life at sea.

“We cannot stress enough how dangerous these voyages are,” said Cmdr. Jared Trusz, commanding officer, Coast Guard Cutter Diligence. “With our presence in the Caribbean Sea and through the Windward Passage, we hope to discourage these voyages on overloaded vessels and prevent loss of life.”

Since Oct, 1, 2020, Coast Guard crews have interdicted 1,119 Haitian migrants compared to:

  • 418 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2020
  • 932 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2019
  • 609 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2018
  • 419 Haitian Migrants in Fiscal Year 2017

Once aboard a Coast Guard cutter, all migrants receive food, water, shelter and basic medical attention. Throughout the interdiction, Coast Guard crew members were equipped with personal protective equipment to minimize potential exposure to any possible case of COVID-19.

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