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Southeast Media Contact: (305) 415-6683

7th District Public Affairs

U.S. Coast Guard

News Release

Date: Sept. 19, 2013

Contact: 7th Coast Guard District

Office: (305) 415-6683

Coast Guard repatriates 39 Cuban migrants

MIAMI — Crewmembers aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Kodiak Island repatriated 39 Cuban migrants to Bahia de Cabañas, Cuba, Wednesday.

This repatriation was a result of four separate migrant interdictions.

On Saturday, watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Key West, Fla., received two reports of rustic vessels detected by an aircrew aboard an HC-144 Ocean Sentry aircraft. The crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Sawfish responded to the report and safely embarked 16 Cuban migrants from two unseaworthy vessels.

On Sunday, the crew aboard the Coast Guard Cutter Venturous interdicted and safely embarked 13 Cuban migrants from a rustic vessel south of Key West.

On Monday, an aircrew aboard an Air Station Miami HC-144 detected a rustic vessel south of Long Key, Fla. The Coast Guard Cutter Paul Clark arrived on scene and safely embarked 10 Cuban migrants.

"The Coast Guard and our partner agencies continue to diligently patrol the waters around the United States to deter illegal migrant activity," said Capt. Mark Fedor, chief of response enforcement. "Our main concern is the safety of life at sea. When migrants put their lives in the hands of smugglers, or take to the sea aboard unseaworthy vessels, they put their lives at grave risk.”

Later, the migrants were transferred to the Coast Guard Cutter Kodiak Island for repatriation.

Once aboard a Coast Guard cutter all migrants receive food, water, shelter, and basic medical attention.

The Coast Guard Cutter Kodiak Island is a 110-foot patrol boat, homeported in Key West.

The Coast Guard Sawfish is a 87-foot patrol boat, homeported in Key West.

The Coast Guard Cutter Venturous is a 210-foot medium endurance cutter, homeported in St. Petersburg, Fla.

The Coast Guard Cutter Paul Clark is a 154-foot fast response cutter, homeported in Miami.

For more information on how to legally immigrate to the U.S., call U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) at 1-800-375-5283 or visit the USCIS website at www.uscis.gov.

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