Cubans anchor offshore to await better weather
Sixty Cuban migrants have arrived in Cayman Islands territorial waters over the past few days and have been given permission to dock or anchor offshore while they await improved weather conditions.
According to the Ministry of Home Affairs, the largest group was at Colliers Beach on Monday. Some 38 Cuban migrants, 31 men and seven women, were awaiting a sea change while the 39th person aboard, a male, chose to disembark and be taken into custody.
Another group of 13 Cubans, nine men and four women, were docked near the old Divi Tiara resort on the south side of Cayman Brac.
A third group of eight Cuban migrants floated into George Town harbor on Sunday and anchored off the harbor.
According to ministry officials, acting Chief Immigration Officer Bruce Smith had given the Cuban boaters permission to stay and await calmer weather. However, local rules require the migrants to stay on their watercraft. If they come ashore, they face arrest and repatriation to Cuba.
In addition to the 60 migrants floating offshore as of Monday, another 44 were being housed in the Immigration Detention Centre awaiting their return home.
The latest influx brings to more than 160 the number of Cuban migrants who have shown up in local waters since the start of this year.