Cuban boat spotted off Brac

A ramshackle, homemade boat, likely carrying Cuban migrants, was spotted off Cayman Brac on Wednesday morning. 

Around a dozen men, sheltering from the rain behind plastic sheets, were visible on board the green and white wooden craft as it passed by the Brac. 

According to Gary Wong, deputy chief immigration officer in Grand Cayman, the Cubans did not appear to have attempted to dock on the Brac. He said he was still awaiting more information from his counterparts on the Sister Islands on Wednesday morning. 

Makeshift vessels carrying Cuban migrants headed for Central America, many of them hoping to reach the U.S., have been a common sight in Cayman’s waters for years. In the early part of 2015, the island appeared to be inundated with migrant boats, with the immigration detention center straining to cope with the influx.  

Fears that special status and residency rights enjoyed by Cubans who make it to the U.S. may be revoked as relations between the two countries are normalized, were cited as potentially driving the increase.  

The arrivals appeared to have slowed down later this year, though a boat carrying 48 migrants landed on the Brac in August. 

A ramshackle boat, believed to be carrying Cuban migrants, was spotted off the Brac on Wednesday. – PHOTO: ED BEATY

A ramshackle boat, believed to be carrying Cuban migrants, was spotted off the Brac on Wednesday. – PHOTO: ED BEATY
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