A group of more than 20 Cuban immigrants arrived in a rustic boat were arrested on land after reaching the shores of the Florida Keys, in the extreme south of the country, local media reported today.
The group of “rafters” was discovered by officers from the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office Thursday morning at Veteran’s Memorial Park, at mile 42 of US1, on Little Duck Cay.
The migrants, all found in good health, arrived on the coast of Florida that Thursday morning, after leaving on Monday from the Cuban town of Santa Cruz del Norte, according to the local media FLKeysNews.com.
Border Patrol agent Adam Hoffner said the Cubans were placed at the disposal of the immigration authorities for deportation to the island.
In January 2017, the then president of the United States Barack Obama (2009-2017) canceled the “wet feet / dry feet” policy decreed in 1995, by which Cubans who touched territory were favored with the Cuban Adjustment Act and could stay in the country and even obtain permanent residence, while the others were deported to the island.
Shortly before the elimination of this benefit, in the Straits of Florida there was an unusual arrival of migrants from the Caribbean country, given that many anticipated the end of “wet feet / dry feet”.
Only between October 1, 2015 and September 30, 2016, a total of 7,411 Cubans were intercepted at sea by agents of the Coast Guard.
After the cancellation of the policy, the crossing of the so-called “rafters” stopped short and became quite unusual.