JIS News

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  • The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade says it is investigating the matter in which four Jamaican fishermen have brought a case against the United States Coast Guard for alleged mistreatment, following their arrest and detention in 2017 in Haitian waters.
  • “We are investigating the situation with our consulate in Miami and other relevant Government agencies as we seek to learn more about the case, but to date have not discovered any record of a complaint having been reported to the Consulate or headquarters in Kingston,” Portfolio Minister and Leader of Government Business in the Senate, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith said on June 14.
  • She noted that the allegations are of serious concern to the Ministry, as the rights of Jamaicans at home and aboard are always of paramount importance to the Government of Jamaica.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade says it is investigating the matter in which four Jamaican fishermen have brought a case against the United States Coast Guard for alleged mistreatment, following their arrest and detention in 2017 in Haitian waters.

“We are investigating the situation with our consulate in Miami and other relevant Government agencies as we seek to learn more about the case, but to date have not discovered any record of a complaint having been reported to the Consulate or headquarters in Kingston,” Portfolio Minister and Leader of Government Business in the Senate, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith said on June 14.

She noted that the allegations are of serious concern to the Ministry, as the rights of Jamaicans at home and aboard are always of paramount importance to the Government of Jamaica.

“The Ministry wishes to advise that it became aware of the matter on Thursday, June 13, through social and print media reports. We have also seen a video in which the fishermen concerned, cite experiences of shocking treatment during an extended period of detention, that would amount to human rights abuse,” Senator Johnson Smith said.

Mrs. Johnson Smith informed that the American Civil Liberties Union has agreed to provide the men with legal representation, noting that the matter is now before the court of law in the United States.

“It is hoped that justice will be delivered through that process,” she said.

She also reminded Jamaicans who travel overseas and who experience difficulties, to lodge reports to the nearest Consulate, Embassy or High Commission or on their return to Jamaica, to the Ministry.