JIS News

State Minister in the Ministry National Security, Dr. Donald Rhodd has said that within the next two weeks Cabinet would release a list of countries whose nationals will need visas to enter Jamaica for the ICC Cricket World Cup next year. “A Cabinet submission has been prepared to address the issue of visa requirements for countries to be added to the list of those who require visas to visit Jamaica,” Dr. Rhodd disclosed while addressing the launch of a Border Protection Workshop for immigration, citizenship and passport personnel held at the Jamaica Customs Department’s Newport East offices, today (October 30).
The submission comes as Jamaica advances preparations to host the ICC Cricket World Cup next March. Under the Yellow Package arrangement, Jamaica will host the opening ceremony, several first round matches, and one semi-final game.
Dr. Rhodd told JIS News that pre-checking would be made possible with the issuance of visas thereby addressing security hazards. “You have a profile on them (visitors) so it gives you the benefit of screening somebody by consulting with your partners all around the world,” he said.
Minister Rhodd further noted that “careful attention will be given to countries which may pose a security threat based on intelligence gathered especially as it relates to possible acts of terrorism.”
The State Minister stressed the visa requirements were being implemented to apply greater regularity to immigration to the country, in order to monitor and diffuse, when necessary, acts of violence that may be perpetrated by extremist groups.
He said the Caribbean could not afford such incidents and that regional security forces were “working to ensure that careful plans are laid as it pertains to border security”.
Dr. Rhodd pointed out that the cricket tournament had provided the region “with an opportunity to overhaul our security apparatus” as well as to strengthen security cooperation that would have an enduring legacy for the free movement of Caribbean nationals to the extent of “a Pan Caribbean security framework.”

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