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Wednesday, May 29, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
US urged to provide more assistance...
for 28th MAY, 2013
Seeking help to battle crime and improve
regional citizen security, Caricom leaders
want the United States to improve infor-
mation and intelligence-sharing on crim-
inal deportees to the region and to support
an international arms treaty to help curb
the regional gun influx.
Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar
made the call on behalf of regional leaders
during yesterday s multilateral talks between
US Vice-President Joe Biden and Caricom
heads at the Diplomatic Centre, St Ann s.
Persad-Bissessar, who heads the Caricom
regional security committee, will assume
Caricom chairmanship in July.
Yesterday s session was part of the pro-
gramme of events for Biden, who arrived
in T&T on Monday.
All but four of the 16 Caricom leaders---
those from Jamaica, Dominica, St Lucia and
Belize---attended. Absentees sent high-level
Speaking on behalf of Caricom leaders,
Persad-Bissessar said they looked forward
to an elaboration of the US government s
policy towards the English-speaking
Caribbean. The PM noted what she said
was a "particularly important issue---that
of criminal deportees."
"We believe an increased focus should
be placed on improved information and
intelligence-sharing with respect to criminal
deportees, in particular access to complete
dossiers on medical and criminal history,"
The PM highlighted the importance of
the Arms Trade Treaty and US-backed
Caribbean Basin Security Initiative pro-
grammes to help stem the flow of small
arms into and through the Caribbean, and
to address immigration reform and criminal
She said the region was actively pursuing
the development of a regional counter-illicit
trafficking strategy, all part of a compre-
hensive security apparatus adopted by Cari-
com in February to improve citizen secu-
"I dare say, Mr Vice-President, that a
secure region redounds not only to our ben-
efit, but also to the benefit of US nationals
who visit our respective countries for busi-
ness or recreation purposes," Persad-Bisses-
"We trust that in our deliberations today
we would seek to have our ally, the United
States of America, reiterate its firm support
for our regional security initiatives."
The PM noted the adoption of an arms
trade treaty by the United Nations in April,
establishing common international standards
for the regulation of international trade in
"The harsh statistic is that 70 per cent
of homicides in our region are committed
with illegal guns, which makes this treaty
of particular significance," she said.
"The treaty would be open for signatures
and ratification next week--- June 2, 2013---
at the UN General Assembly and will enter
into force after it has been ratified by 50
"We urge the US to support this treaty
and use its influence to promote the signing,
ratification and implementation of the treaty,
as well as providing technical and other
resources to assist Caricom member states
in the implementation of the treaty."
In dealing with the deportee issue during
the closed-door multilateral talks, Persad-
Bissessar noted a study undertaken by Dr
Anne Marie Barnes in 2009 as it relates to
criminal deportation from primarily Canada,
the United Kingdom and the US.
The report highlighted a number of issues
experienced by Caricom sates which were
as a result of high rates of recidivism by
A number of recommendations were
made with respect to improving this prob-
lem. These include memorandums of under-
standing between sending and receiving
states which would provide a framework
for deportation of criminals, including infor-
mation sharing, notifications and processing
It also included deportees access to
assets within deporting states and systems
of reintegration of deportees to minimise
rates of recidivism, plus public education.
T&T made it clear that while a number
of Caricom states have seen some improve-
ment in the information sharing and noti-
fications prior to arrival, all agree that there
Deportee woes for Caricom
is room for improvement with respect to information
sharing and notification prior to the arrival of criminal
deportees from the United States.
Persad-Bissessar said during the talks, it was noted
one of the major problems being experienced was
the fact that many of the criminal deportees would
have left the region prior to adulthood and do not
have any ties to the countries to which they have
US Vice-President Joe Biden, second from left sitting, speaks with secondary school children during a photo-op with his wife Dr.Jill Biden, left,
President Anthona Carmona and his wife Reema, right, at the Office of the President, St Ann's, during the Biden's courtesy call. PHOTO: SHIRLEY
The chairs of the National Centre for Persons with
Disabilities and the Caribbean Kids and Families
Therapy Organisation were mixed up in a news story
published last Saturday headlined: Carmona unhappy
with discrimination against disabled (Page 5).
Dr Natalie Dick is the chairman of the NCPD, and the
chairman of the CKFTO is Ms Elizabeth Aleong.
Our apologies for any confusion or embarrassment
caused by the error.
GETTING IT RIGHT
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