Cuban migrants want to be released

NASSAU — Three Cuban migrants who are being held at Her Majesty’s Prisons have filed a writ of habeas corpus asking the court to release them based on “various allegations of abuse”, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration Fred Mitchell said yesterday.

Mitchell, who released a statement on the issue, said he did not want to comment further on the matter, which will be heard on August 1.

Mitchell also noted that despite several reports in the international media — which have referenced decisions by the Bahamas government coming out of meetings in South Florida last week — there has been “no change in the government’s publicly announced position on these matters in various statements made earlier”.

On Friday, The Miami Herald reported that the Bahamian government had agreed to review the status of undocumented Cuban migrants in the detention centre in order to quash calls for a boycott of the country by Cuban protestors.

The newspaper also said The Bahamas was considering moving the jailed Cubans from maximum security into the general population at HMP.

“The individuals continue in lawful detention at Her Majesty’s Prison,” Mitchell said.

“For the moment, then, there will be no further comment.”

Last week, Minister of National Security Keith Bell revealed that six Cuban detainees were moved from the Carmichael Road Detention Centre to the prison due to “hostile behaviour”.

Bell said some of the detainees were on a hunger strike and later sewed their mouths shut with string in protest while at the detention centre.

He said the detainees held at HMP have hired lawyers to challenge whether authorities can detain them at the prison. (Nassau Guardian)

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