Immigration from Cuba is still on the rise, according to data from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection. So far this fiscal year, which ends on September 30, more than 44,000 Cuban asylum seekers have entered the United States. This number is five times higher than the entire wave of Cubans who reached the U.S. in 2011, data shows.
The surge of the Cuban immigration began in 2014, after the announcement that the U.S. and Cuba were in the process of normalizing their relations. Based on the agreement between the two countries, known as the Cuban Adjustment Act, Cuban citizens who reach the United States are automatically provided with refugee status, unlike immigrants arriving from other countries. The only condition, the so-called “wet-foot, dry-foot” rule, is that they make it to the States on land.
According to the Center for Immigration Studies, most visa-less Cubans enter the U.S. via a land port of entry, particularly the U.S.-Mexico border. About 70 percent of all Cuban asylum-seekers enter through Laredo, Texas each fiscal year.
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