Above: the Turks and Caicos Islands
By the Caribbean Journal staff
Turks and Caicos authorities intercepted a sloop carrying 82 illegal migrants from Haiti, the government announced Monday.
The vessel was captured following a report from the government’s coastal radar station. It was intercepted and brought to South Dock in Providenciales at around 10:00 AM local time.
The group included 60 men and 22 women, all of whom were handed over to immigration officials.
The government said they would be repatriated to Haiti “in the next few days.”
The sloop was the latest from Haiti intercepted by TCI authorities, part of a wave of illegal migration from Haiti that has led to sometimes-strained ties between the two island neighbours.
At the end of July, the two sides agreed on a new action plan to combat illegal migration.
“I urge the Haitian authorities to stop these attempts at illegal migration from their shores to the Turks and Caicos Islands,” said Ricardo Don Hue Gardiner, Turks and Caicos’ Minister for Border Control and Labour. “Not only is it extremely dangerous for those concerned – this vessel was taking on water when we caught it – but, it is a disproportionate burden on the resources of this country. It must stop.”