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Jan 21, 2020

Caribbean Leaders Meet in Kingston, Jamaica

Mike Pompeo

In a matter that has regional importance, the prime ministers of Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago are not participating in a meeting with the U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Pompeo arrived this evening in Kingston, Jamaica.  The meeting has caused a rift in CARICOM because not all leaders were invited and discussions are expected to involve Venezuela’s political crisis. As you know a number of CARICOM states have benefitted significantly from the Petrocaribe Initiative.  Some of the leaders see the meeting as a departure from formal talks with the U.S.  In fact, PM Mia Mottley from Barbados, who is also the CARICOM chair, has said the meeting is an attempt to divide the region, sentiments that were echoed by Trinidad and Tobago. Belize’s Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington is heading to Kingston to be at the meeting along with leaders from the Bahamas, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Saint Kitts and Nevis and Saint Lucia. Last year, Jamaica, Bahamas, Saint Lucia, Haiti and Dominica privately met President Trump at his Mar-a-Lago Resort. Trump promised investment aid in exchange for support of US interests.

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