Coast Guard repatriates 27 migrants to Cuba

Coast Guard Cutter Charles David Jr. file photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Melissa Leake

Coast Guard Cutter Charles David Jr. file photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Melissa Leake

MIAMI — The Coast Guard Cutter Charles David, Jr. (WPC-1107) crew repatriated 27 Cuban migrants Thursday to Cuba.

A Coast Guard Air Station Miami HC-144 Ocean Sentry airplane crew located a rustic vessel traveling northbound approximately 29 miles north of Cuba, Saturday. The Coast Guard Cutter Charles David Jr. (WPC-1107) crew arrived on scene and safely embarked 27 Cuban migrants who attempted to enter the United States illegally.

“The Coast Guard diligently patrols the Florida Straits and Caribbean Sea to ensure the safety of life at sea and the security of the United States. United States policy is to promote safe, orderly, and legal travel and migration,” said Rear Adm. Peter Brown, commander of the Coast Guard 7th District and director of Homeland Security Taskforce Southeast. “When unsafe, disorderly, and illegal maritime migration attempts are discovered by the Coast Guard or our partners, migrants are rescued from distress, humanely treated, and promptly repatriated to their country of origin or departure.”

Once aboard Coast Guard cutters, all migrants receive food, water, shelter and medical attention.

Approximately 296 Cuban migrants have attempted to illegally enter the U.S. via the maritime environment since Oct. 1 in fiscal year 2018 compared to 2,098 Cuban migrants in fiscal year 2017. These numbers 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 Sentinel-class cutters homeported in Key West, Florida.

Rear Adm. Peter Brown is the Commander of the Coast Guard’s 7th District based in Miami, Florida which oversees all Coast Guard operations in South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, as well as Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Rear Adm. Brown is also the director of Homeland Security Task Force Southeast, a standing multi-agency team that unifies the whole of government effort to monitor, identify, mitigate, and respond to large-scale migration events.

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