MIAMI (CBS4) – U.S. Immigration officials are seeing an uptick in the number of undocumented Cubans entering or trying to reach the country.

CBS4 News partner Miami Herald’s Spanish language publication, El Nuevo Herald, reports that migrants intercepted at sea or reaching U.S. shores have more than doubled over the last year.

The paper reports that 1,700 Cubans were interdicted or reached land in the 2011 fiscal year, which ended in September. The previous year there were 831. The largest increase was seen in Coast Guard interdictions at sea, which rose from 422 to 1,000.

Landings to U.S. shores rose from 409 to nearly 700, while arrivals at border posts remained largely unchanged.

Those numbers reverse a three-year downward trend.

Activists and those in contact with undocumented immigrants say the island’s weak economy could be fueling the increase. Elizardo Sanchez, head of the Cuban Commission for Human Rights and National Reconciliation, says there is less money and food each day.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press and CBS4 News partner The Miami Herald contributed to this report.)

Comments (4)
  1. ConcernedCitizen says:

    I believe it’s time we treat the cuban refugees the safe way as all other nations. Their country is starting it’s own reform, they should be sent back to facilitate the change, usually it those who are trying to escape the law who are trying to make their way here, or those who have family members who did the same thing. My ancestors came here legitamately in the early 1900’s, learn to speak English. It’s time we expected the same thing from those coming from other countries.

  2. Noway says:

    Great, more rude and inconsiderate cubans entering our country. I bet they won’t even bother to learn English.

  3. Melinda Ferrell says:

    I agree Noway, but it is the laws that allow it or should I say lack of enforcement. Until Florida and other states see the harm in catering to this unlawful act we will continue to see less jobs and less help for the American citizen. There should be a hotline that any american can use to report illegal immigrants and have some actual response but there is not.

  4. Jhdz says:

    I am a legal Cuban Refugee who came to this country in 1967 when the reason for leaving Cuba was political. This was during a time when Communism was being openly rejected by this country and most democracies throughout the world. I have always been very thankful for the great opportunity this country gave us and I became a US citizen and always been proud to live in this Great Nation. Shortly after the break up of the Soviet Union followed by the revolts for freedom that took place in many Communist Countries many were under the impression that an end to Communism had finally arrived but communists implemented different tactical strategies which appear to be more successful than the old ones. The majority of the new Cuban Immigrants do not leave Cuba for the same reasons we did back in the 60s and 70s. They are significantly apathetical about politics and return to visit Cuba shortly after they are granted legal status here in the US. My opinion is we should change our policy towards Cuba and put a stop to the Cuban migration, lift the embargo with certain conditions so that the US does not continue to be a scapegoat for the Cuban Government and to allow for pressure to build in Cuba so that the citizens can bring an end the regime that has controlled their lives for half a century.

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