Escaped Cuban slaves and the Cayman Islands

Whenever we hear talk of Cubans taking to rickety boats and rafts in order to escape Cuba and a life of enslavement at the hands of the Castro regime, we think of the Florida Keys and all who have made it there, have been caught at sea, and the unknown thousands who have died trying. But north is not the only direction Cubans have been taking when they attempt their escape, and many would be surprised to know that the Cayman Islands does not welcome escaped Cuban slaves. Cubans who land in the Cayman Islands are returned to their slave masters, in compliance with an agreement between the Cayman government and the slave masters in Havana.

Cubans opt to come ashore

(CNS): After well over a year without a single vessel containing Cuban migrants being reported in Cayman waters, the second boat in just over a month was intercepted off the north coast of Grand Cayman today. Department of Immigration officials reported that a Cuban vessel carrying 21 people was spotted by a joint immigration, customs, RCIPS marine unit at around 3pm Thursday afternoon. Deputy Chief Immigration Officer Enforcement Gary Wong said that a couple from the craft decided to come ashore. Meanwhile, the other 19 refugees, including one female, indicated their intention to continue on their journey to Honduras in the boat, which police confirmed was seaworthy.

The couple who opted to come ashore were brought to the George Town Barcadere, sources revealed. The husband and wife, both aged 28, are now in custody and being processed by immigration officials before being deported back to Cuba.

The vessel, which has continued on its journey, was originally spotted yesterday off the coast of Cayman Brac and is the second boat after some 14 months to be intercepted.

The last vessel stopped by officials was carrying 16 migrants in a 21 foot vessel  (pictured above) and those aboard opted to carrying on their journey without assistance from local officials under the terms of the MOU Cayman has with the Cuban Government.

If an escaped Cuban slave makes it to the Cayman Islands, they are given the option of moving on or being returned to their slave master. As this video shows, these escaped slaves are not even worth enough to give them some water.

H/T to Tony44 for the video