Two migrants granted asylum after appeal

Two migrants – one a Cuban man, the other an unidentified woman – have been granted asylum in the Cayman Islands after initially being denied.

The Immigration Appeals Tribunal issued the rulings on 2 Oct.

One of the people was denied an initial asylum request on 20 April 2017, the other on 21 Nov. 2018. The Cuban man arrived in Cayman in Jan. 2017. He had piloted a boat carrying 27 migrants.

In its decision, the tribunal noted it was not necessary for asylum seekers to categorically prove their claims of persecution, only that such claims seemed reasonable, given the accounts they provided and the record of their country of origin. In this case, it noted the human rights violations laid out in a report by the US Department of State.

“Taking the reference documents into consideration,” the tribunal’s letter said, “the tribunal determined that the appellant had established a genuine fear of persecution to a reasonable degree, that if he continued to stay in Cuba, given his political opinions, his past history and his influence of others, his life would be intolerable.”

The decision was one of several in recent months that have granted asylum to Cuban nationals.