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The Public Defender, Mr. Earl Witter has been conducting his investigations into the circumstances in which 73 persons were killed during the incursion by the security forces into West Kingston in May of last year.

The government has provided the requested financial resources to enable the Public Defender to carry out his investigations.  On completion of his investigations and submission of his report to Parliament, a decision will be made as to the action that will be taken.

In a statement made on 19th January, Mr. Witter said that ballistic tests must be carried out before the investigations can be properly concluded.  He further stated that he “would not be able to assist any Commission of Enquiry in less than nine months, until the ballistic work is complete."

In the meanwhile, the government has provided assistance to over 2,000 affected families in the form of funeral grants and compensation for damage to houses and personal effects to the tune of $96 million.

 

Issued by: The Office of the Prime Minister