CARICOM Heads to consider 100 crime, security recommendations
Stabroek News
June 28, 2002

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The report on crime and security to be presented to the Twenty-third Conference of CARICOM Heads of Governments contains 100 recommendations, CARICOM Coordinator of the Regional Coordinating Unit with responsibility for Drug Control Programmes, Fairbairn Liverpool, said.

In a statement circulated among journalists at the media clinic at the CARICOM Secretariat on Tuesday, Liverpool said that the recommendations were put together by the Regional Task Force on crime and security and reviewed by a joint committee of attorneys-general and ministers with responsibility for national security.

The issue of crime and security will be high on the agenda of the three-day CARICOM Heads of Government summit which opens in Georgetown on July 3.

The task force was established following a directive given by the Heads of Governments at the Twenty-second Conference, which was held in the Bahamas last year when the heads expressed concerns over the new forms of crime and violence that continue to threaten the regionís security with implications for individual safety and the social and economic well-being of the region as a whole.

Liverpool explained that the task force was mandated to examine the major causes of crime and to recommend approaches to deal with the inter-related problems of crime, illicit drugs, firearms and terrorism.

The Task Force was chaired by Trinidadian Lancelot Selman and comprised representatives from each CARICOM member state, the Regional Security Systems, the Association of Caribbean Commissioners of Police, the University of the West Indies, and the secretariats of CARICOM and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States.

Because of the events of September 11, he said, the task force started its work in November. The task forceís work programme was facilitated by six sub-committees that followed up on specific areas.

The three areas of focus were issues relative to the underlying causes and sources of crime; initiatives against activities that pose a direct security threat to the region; and multilateral initiatives for international security which the region is committed to by participating as co-victims of transnational crime.

Liverpool said that in examining the wide range and complex issues surrounding the causes of crime, the task force considered among others, poverty, unemployment, social marginalisation and inequality, the illegal drug trade, corruption, trafficking in firearms, deportation of criminals and the ineffectiveness of the existing criminal justice systems in the region. (Miranda La Rose)