MIAMI (CBS4) – The U.S. Coast Guard has noted an increase in the last couple of months in the number of Cuban migrants intercepted at sea as they made their way to the U.S.
The U.S. Coast Guard said on Wednesday that in the last two weeks they picked up a total of 59 Cuban migrants. Forty eight have since be repatriated, another nine were taken to the Guantanamo naval base because they may quality to resettle in another country. Two were brought to Miami because they were legal residents of the U.S.
“There have been far too many cases where people have died while making these unsafe sea voyages. Our primary concern is always for the safety of migrants in distress at sea, so the Coast Guard will continue to patrol to find and rescue migrants from these unsafe situations, as well as protect our nation’s borders by deterring dangerous and illegal activity,” said Coast Guard Capt. Peter Brown in a written statement.
A Coast Guard spokesman says April saw the largest number of migrant interdictions with 125. From October of last year to May 1st 2011, a total of 365 Cuban migrants have been picked up by the Coast Guard. That is a big increase compared to Oct. 2009 to May 1st 2010 when a total of 135 Cuban migrants were intercepted.