Bahamian law enforcement authorities say they have apprehended 39 Haitians, including 13 women, who were seeking to enter the country illegally over the last weekend.
They said that a joint maritime operation between the Royal Bahamas Defence Force, Police Force, Operation Bahamas Turks and Caicos Islands (OPBAT), and the United States Coast Guard participated in the exercise.
“Efforts to reach the migrants by land and sea proved difficult.”— Bahamian authorities
According to an official statement, the migrants were spotted on an isolated cay off the southeastern coast of Great Inagua earlier last the week.
“But because of the rocky terrain, efforts to reach the migrants by land and sea proved difficult. However, a US helo was dispatched to assist in removing the migrants… who were turned over to Immigration officials in Inagua for further processing.”
This is the second group of migrants to be caught in Bahamian waters within the past month. On November 8, an estimated 58 undocumented Haitian migrants were apprehended near Deadman’s Cay, Long Island, aboard a 40-ft sloop. They have since been charged and repatriated.
The Royal Bahamas Defence Force said that the installation of the state-of-the-art Kelvin Hughes long-range coastal radar “has proven to be effective in the fight against illicit activities”.