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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Cubans Return Home

MARIEL, Cuba () -- A group of some 500 Cubans who had tried to go to the United States by holing up on an oil tanker at Cuba's port of Mariel have left the vessel voluntarily and gone home, Cuban state television said.

Authorities had insisted the boat would not be allowed to leave port and urged those on board to leave, saying they would not face reprisals.

The occupation was the latest in a spate of incidents involving Cubans trying to leave the communist-ruled Caribbean island by sea.

The U.S. Coast Guard helped 272 Cuban refugees, mostly on small sailboats and rafts, reach shore in Florida on Monday for its biggest one-day total since the Mariel boatlift in 1980.