In November 1999, five-year-old Elián, his mother, and twelve others fled Cuba on a small aluminum boat with a faulty engine. Elián's mother and ten others died in the crossing. Elián was rescued at sea by two fishermen who then gave him to the United States Coast Guard, who gave him to the US Immigration and Naturalization Service. INS released Elián to his great-uncle, Lázaro, who lived in Miami and was granted temporary custody by the local family court. However, Juan Miguel González, Elian's father said that Elián's mother, Elizabeth, took him without Juan Miguel's knowledge and demanded that the boy be returned to Cuba. The ensuing controversy included street demonstrations in Miami and in Cuba, forcible removal of the child from his relatives, a series of Florida and US court cases, and Elian's eventual return to Cuba with his father in June, 2000. While Elian and his family have generally resumed their ordinary lives, he continues to be a media figure in the US and in Cuba.

Related categories 2

The Smoking Gun
Collection of court transcripts, legal records, and other documents relating to the case.
NBC News - Finding Elian
Interview with Juan Miguel and home video of Elian, along with commentary on US restrictions on family visits. (August 01, 2004)
Greater Things
The words surrounding the alphabetical insertion point of 'Elian' in English provide prophetic commentary on his plight and the importance of freedom. (March 21, 2002)
Debunking the Elián González Mythology
Douglas Dunn article. (January 01, 2000)
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