Recently, Old Uncle Joe’s administration put out a statement with a warning for Americans against attempting to bring any sort of supplies to Cuba.
This past week, groups of Floridians attempted to use their own boats to aid the Cuban people that are currently protesting the island’s communist regime. A sizable group of boaters was reportedly departing from Miami with their boats full of food, water, and medicine.
On Thursday, however, an advisory from the United States Department of Homeland Security highlighted a warning that any such actions are completely prohibited:
It is illegal for boaters to depart with the intent to travel to Cuba for any purpose without a permit. Boaters departing any United States port with the intention of entering Cuban territorial waters must obtain permission in advance from the U.S. Coast Guard.
Vessels and persons illegally entering Cuban territorial waters or getting underway or departing from U.S. territorial waters with the intention of entering Cuban TTW, without the required permit may be subject to seizure of their vessel, civil and criminal penalties up to $25,000 per day, and 10 years in prison.
People who violate U.S. immigration laws and illegally bring foreign nationals into the country, or who attempt to do so, may be subject to arrest, vessel forfeiture, civil and criminal fines up to $250,000 per day, and five years in prison.
The advisory that was put out does, however, direct the readers to another website through which they can put in a request for permission to enter Cuban waters.
In an entirely separate release, the Coast Guard stated:
It is illegal for boaters to depart from the U.S. with the intent of transiting to Cuba for any purpose without a permit, and the waters are in the Florida Straits are unpredictable and dangerous.
The Coast Guard strongly urges boaters to not take to the seas as it could put the boaters life in danger, especially during hurricane season. In recent months, 20 Cuban migrants from two separate search and rescue cases could not be found in the Florida Straits after their rustic vessels capsized.
As you may know, for the past week the Cuban people have been heavily protesting the island’s current communist government. Groups of residents of Southern Florida, many of whom happen to be of Cuban descent, took to the streets in support of the movement. The demonstrators waver Cuban flags around while continually chanting “Libertad.”
In addition to these demonstrations, a group of rappers and pop stars based out of Miami and Cuba have started collaborating on a song entitled “Patria y Vida,” which calls out the Cuban government for its horrid denial of civil liberties. Many people currently see the song as the spark for the current protest movement.