Cuban migrants that floated ashore to Miami Beach, Florida from Cuba have been detained, Smith said.
“Border Patrol processed the migrants yesterday in accordance with the Cuban Adjustment Act,” Smith said on Wednesday.
On Tuesday, 12 Cuban illegal immigrants and a dog arrived on the shores of Miami Beach near the Shelborne Wyndham Grand after floating there from Cuba in a sailboat.
Smith explained that Cuban illegal immigrants arriving at a CBP port of entry or between ports expressing fear of return to Cuba are inspected and paroled.
“The Cuban national may be eligible under the Cuban Refugee Adjustment Act of 1966 to apply for lawful permanent residence one year [in the United States] after inspection and parole,” Smith said.
Smith also noted that CBP officers and agents always check to see whether any Cuban illegal individual has any criminal record or US immigration history.
In 1961, the United States imposed a travel and trade embargo on Cuba during the height of the Cold War because of the antagonism between Washington and the communist government in Havana.
In December 2014, President Barack Obama announced plans to normalize relations between the two countries, which lead to the implementation of revised regulations by the US Treasury Department to ease the US trade and travel policies toward Cuba.
In August, Congresswoman Karen Bass told Sputnik that the current US Congress is unlikely to lift trade embargo against the island nation.