US Coastguard Rescues 6 Cuban Rafters

Off the Coast of Miami

By Café Fuerte

A polyethylene foam vessel, on which the six Cuban immigrants rescued at Key Biscayne this Wednesday traveled to Miami. Photo: US Coastguard Service
A polyethylene foam vessel, on which the six Cuban immigrants rescued at Key Biscayne this Wednesday traveled to Miami. Photo: US Coastguard Service

HAVANA TIMES — Six immigrants were rescued this Wednesday floating on inner tubes near the coast of Miami, the US Coastguard Service reported.

The six men were found five miles from Key Biscayne after a good Samaritan informed the Miami Beach coast patrol station of his discovery. A 45-feet long vessel was immediately sent out to the rescue.

All of the castaways appeared to be in good health. They were sent to a small watercraft to determine their migratory status.

“The alleged immigrants were rescued at sea without difficulties and transferred to a watercraft belonging to the Coastguard Service. Their cases are being evaluated,” a communiqué reported.

Though authorities have yet to confirm where the group comes from, everything seems to indicate the men are Cuban migrants. Those rescued said they were traveling on a makeshift raft and that they abandoned the vessel and held on to the inner tubes.

Should their Cuban nationality be confirmed, the men would have to demonstrate a history of persecution or political harassment on the island to avoid repatriation.

Shortly after, the coastguard came upon a rustic vessel made of polyethylene foam and wrapped in a blue sailcloth. The men used this makeshift vessel to reach the Miami coast area.

The first images made public of those rescued do not appear to be individuals who have made a long sea voyage.

During the present US fiscal year (which began this past October), the US Coastguard Service has intercepted as many as 1,561 Cubans in the high seas, the highest figure reported since 2008. The summer months have been particularly active in terms of Cuban sea voyages towards Florida. As many as 218 rafters were captured in June and 337 in July.

11 thoughts on “US Coastguard Rescues 6 Cuban Rafters

  • Please…I don’t even want to try to envision a Cuba with a WalMart or a McDonald’s. That’s a nightmare scenario for me and I hope it never happens.

    That’s not at all what I’m talking about either. Cuba won’t be a consumer based economy in the traditional sense for the foreseeable future. However Cuba could be an extremely lucrative manufacturing and assembly center for US based companies and their products.

    Moses, I don’t understand why you have so little faith in your country’s ability to negotiate incremental and meaningful change in Cuba as a prerequisite of setting up shop there. Surely you can’t honestly still believe that your country’s existing isolationist policies will have the desired effect. If that were so, we’d already be seeing the results and celebrating the effectiveness of current US policy. Change will only occur in Cuba when their government is tied economically to US interests. You really need to forget about Cuba completely changing overnight…that simply won’t happen…with or without the embargo, and with or without the Castros.

    Change will slowly evolve in Cuba…one negotiated contract at a time, until a tipping point is reached. How long will that take? Your guess is as good as mine. But one thing is certain…no progress will be made at all if current US policy remains unchanged.

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