The United States Coast Guard recovered the body. of a woman and 56 people who were shipwrecked in the Mona Passage, maritime strip between Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, as reported in a statement on Monday. The rescue operation was supported by the Navy of the Dominican Republic, that recovered another twelve people who had fallen into the sea from the boat in which they were illegally heading to the west coast of Puerto Rico. After the rescue, the Dominican Republic Navy ship embarked the 69 people, including the body of the deceased woman, and transported them to a port in the Caribbean territory. Captain José Díaz, interim commander of the San Juan Sector of the US Coast Guard, stressed that joint work saved the lives of 68 people, in an event recorded last Saturday. During a patrol near the Mona Passage on Saturday night, the crew of a Coast Guard C-27 Spartan aircraft detected a vessel in transit to Puerto Rico.
Meanwhile, a Coast Guard patrol boat and the Dominican Republic Navy ship Aldebaran responded to the sighting. Crew members of the Coast Guard vessel provided resuscitation to the deceased woman, without positive results. A Coast Guard MH-60 helicopter from the Borinquen Air Station searched the area for possible shipwrecks, without finding anyone. The Coast Guard again appealed to Dominican citizens to desist from trying to reach the coast of Puerto Rico on illicit trips in which they risk their lives in the hands of human traffickers.