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Jamaica, Trinidad To Discuss Regional Integration Movement

Jamaica's PM Miller and Trinidad and Tobago's PM Persad-Bissessar give a press conference about International Women's Day in ParamariboKINGSTON, Jamaica — Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Senator A J Nicholson Monday issued an invitation to his Trinidadian counterpart Winston Dookeran for discussions in Jamaica.

The invitation, through Reverend Dr Iva Gloudon, Trinidad and Tobago High Commissioner to Jamaica is for Dookeran to visit before the end of 2013 for talks on Jamaica-Trinidad relations, in the context of the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME).

According to a statement from the Ministry, Nicholson advised the High Commissioner that “the number of Jamaicans being returned from Trinidad and Tobago had generated considerable public outrage and had the potential to undermine confidence and diminish goodwill on the part of many Jamaicans towards Trinidad and Tobago and the wider regional integration movement”.

“I believe that our personal intervention and collaboration can go a far way in bringing this issue to a speedy and successful conclusion,” Minister Nicholson said in emphasizing the importance of a visit from Dookeran.

“This is of the utmost importance as a regional integration movement which does and is perceived as protecting and advancing the interests of all sides is vital to the progress of our regional enterprise.”

In the meantime, the Foreign Affairs Ministry has said that to date, only a few Jamaicans have filed reports in relation to the recent incidents in Trinidad and Tobago and implored citizens, whenever they are detained or refused entry to a country, to immediately lodge a written report with the Immigration Authorities processing them or with the Ministry on their return to Jamaica.

“Anecdotal reports alone are not sufficient to allow the Ministry to effectively represent the interests of Jamaicans who believe their rights have been infringed,” the statement said.


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