~ 720th Military Police Battalion Reunion Association History Project ~
Joint Task Force 160

   In Operation Sea Signal (August 1994-February 1996) Navy personnel based at Guantanamo Bay Naval Base (NAVBASE GTMO) Cuba, and Marines from II Marine Expeditionary Force assumed the mission of feeding, housing, clothing, and caring for more than 50,000 Haitian and Cuban migrants seeking asylum in the United States. Since September 1994, the Navy-Marine Corps team housed and processed over 40,000 migrants awaiting repatriation or parole to the United States. Support to Joint Task Force 160 spanned 18 months.

   Only a few of the 21,000 Haitians were granted US asylum. Most were repatriated, with the last leaving the base on 01 November 1995.

   Almost all the 30,000 Cubans were airlifted to Florida after two shifts in US immigration policy. The Clinton administration, reversing a three-decade open-door policy toward Cubans, ordered that the thousands of Cubans taking to the seas be sent to Guantanamo. But in May 1995 the White House announced that virtually all of the Cubans already at Guantanamo would be flown to Florida, with those subsequently picked up at sea facing repatriation.

   When the last migrants departed in late January 1996, the Joint Logistics Support Group Guantanamo (JLSG GTMO) stood up to complete the mission of retrograding all remaining SEA SIGNAL equipment and materiel assets and restoring the grounds and facilities of NAVBASE GTMO to pre-SEA SIGNAL conditions. Information and map edited from GlobalSecurity.com

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