Ten Cuban migrants in a sinking vessel were rescued off the Florida coast, according to the US Coast Guard.
A Coast Guard boat spotted the vessel on Thursday about 40 miles (about 64km) off Key Largo, the Coast Guard said in a tweet.
“They didn’t have lifejackets or safety equipment,” said Capt Shawn Koch, commanding officer of Air Station Miami. “If the air crew hadn’t found them on the patrol, these people would not have survived the night.”
Six migrants were repatriated to Cuba, and four others were evacuated to Florida for medical treatment, the Coast Guard said.
The rescue came two weeks after a boat believed to be used for human smuggling capsized off Florida’s coast en route from the Bahamas. Only one of the 40 passengers survived.
People from countries as far apart as Cuba and China continue with the help of people smugglers to use the islands as a springboard into the US – sometimes with devastating consequences.