Coast Guard rescues 9 Cubans

Coast Guard Cutter Charles David Jr. file photo.

Coast Guard Cutter Charles David Jr. file photo.

MIAMI — Coast Guard crews rescued nine Cubans, Sunday, who were safely transferred to Cuban authorities, Friday.

A Coast Guard Air Station Miami HC-144 Ocean Sentry aircrew spotted and notified Coast Guard Sector Key West watchstanders of a rustic vessel, Sunday, at approximately 5:40 p.m., about 54 miles southwest of Marquesas Keys. Coast Guard Cutter Charles David Jr’s crew arrived on scene and brought the migrants aboard, due to the vessel actively sinking and safety of life at sea concerns. The vessel was later sunk 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.

“Coast Guard crews patrol the Florida Straits, Windward Passage and the Mona Passage, maintaining a solid presence with air and sea assets to save lives by removing migrants from unsafe environments and deterring dangerous illegal migrant activity” said Capt. Shawn Koch, Coast Guard Air Station Miami commanding officer. “Coast Guard crews provide humanitarian aid, including food, water, blankets and medical care to migrants while they are in U.S. custody.”

Since Oct, 1, 2020, Coast Guard crews have rescued 838 Cubans compared to:

  • 5,396 Cuban Migrants in Fiscal Year 2016
  • 1,468 Cuban Migrants in Fiscal Year 2017
  • 259 Cuban Migrants in Fiscal Year 2018
  • 313 Cuban Migrants in Fiscal Year 2019
  • 49 Cuban Migrants in Fiscal Year 2020

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.

Family members in the United States inquiring about possible family members interdicted at sea, please contact your local U.S. representative. Relatives located outside the United States please contact your local U.S. Embassy.

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