In fiscal year 2014, which ends on September 31, nearly 14,000 Cubans entered the United States illegally through its border with Mexico.
That represents a 150 percent increase in five years, reported Infobae.com, a Spanish-language news site.
They were part of the 20,522 Cubans who arrived in the United States through various ports of entry. Some 16,000 of them asked for admission to the United States under the Cuban Adjustment Act of 1996 (CAA).
The CAA, according to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, grants Cubans a special pathway to legal residency in this country at the discretion of the Attorney General if they meet certain criteria.
“It’s sad, the story of we Cubans who have crossed the border this year, for nothing more than to achieve a dream that has eluded us in Cuba,” said Daimaris Taboada, who came to the United States via Mexico, according to Infobae.
Other Cubans have gained entry into the United States by availing themselves of a 2008 measure in Spain that grants citizenship to people who have a grandparent from that European nation — it's called La Ley de Nietos (Granchildren's Law).
Those who obtain Spanish citizenship then try to use it to gain entry into the United States, Infobae reports.
Part of the reason Cubans have been exploring these new ways of gaining admission into the United States is the bolstering of patrols on the waters between Cuba and the U.S. That has resulted in a higher number of Cubans being intercepted at sea and repatriated to Cuba.