The U.S. Coast Guard intercepted a vessel with six Cuban immigrants on board along the coasts east of the city of Boca Raton, north of Miami, the institution said without specifying the date of the operation.
According to the Seventh Coast Guard District, the Coast Guard stopped a wooden boat with six men on board when they were seven miles (about 11 kilometers) east of Boca Raton.
The @USCG interdicted six migrants Monday 7 miles east of Boca Raton.
— USCGSoutheast (@USCGSoutheast) August 8, 2019
The six Cuban rafters, who will be repatriated, are part of several recent interceptions, including one with 27 nationals in early August and another with 33 last July.
During the current fiscal year, from October 1 to last, about 438 Cubans have tried to arrive “illegally” by sea to U.S. territory, compared to 384 accounted for throughout the 2018 fiscal year, according to data from the Coast Guard.
These figures represent the total number of “interdictions” at sea and landings in the Straits of Florida, the Caribbean and the Atlantic.
In January 2017, then President Barack Obama (2009-2017) canceled the “wet foot/dry foot” policy enacted in 1995, whereby Cubans who touched land were favored with the Cuban Adjustment Act and could stay in the United States and even obtain permanent residence, while the others were deported to the island.
Shortly before the elimination of this benefit, an unusual arrival of migrants from the Caribbean country was registered in the Straits of Florida, given that many anticipated the end of the “wet foot/dry foot,” a migratory wave that has declined in recent years.
After the cancellation of the policy, the crossing of the so-called “rafters” was markedly reduced and became more unusual, but this year interceptions of Cubans in the Straits of Florida have been increasingly frequent.