Two women boarded a flight to Havana with U.S. Immigration and Customs officials Friday, becoming the first Cuban nationals to be deported since the immigration policy known as "wet foot, dry foot" ended last month.
ICE officials told NBC 6 the women, who were seeking asylum in the U.S., were placed on a morning flight back to the island nation Friday morning. Their identities were not made public.
The Obama administration announced the end to the 'wet foot, dry foot' policy, which granted residency to Cubans who made it to the U.S., just days before President Donald Trump took office.
Wilfredo Allen, an attorney for one of the women, said they had arrived at Miami International Airport with European passports. The women requested asylum and were detained.
"They asked for political asylum as Cubans, what happens is the world has changed," Allen said.
Allen asked for them to be released so they could return to Cuba on their own, but the U.S. government denied the request and said they would be deported, sources said.
"I think part of the reason why they're being deported is to send a message that they will enforce the law, they will enforce it severely," Allen said.
President Trump has not established what, if anything, will change regarding U.S. Cuba policy. Press secretary Sean Spicer told NBC 6's Jackie Nespral earlier this month that the administration is reviewing its position with Havana.
"There will be no more paroles issued at the airport for people who seek asylum with a Cuban passport or with a European passport," Allen said.