US urged to impose stronger laws to curb gun trafficking to Jamaica

WASHINGTON – Jamaica’s Ambassador to Washington, Anthony Johnson, has called on the American government to put strong legislation in place to stem the trafficking of small arms to Jamaica and other Caribbean territories.

The Ambassador, who is Jamaica’s Permanent Representative to the Organisation of American States (OAS), was speaking to JIS News yesterday (April 16), prior to his departure for Trinidad and Tobago to attend the Fifth Summit of the Americas.

He said that “Jamaica is concerned about the trafficking of small arms into the country, and tougher measures must be put in place to eradicate this major problem once and for all.”

He pointed out that the trafficking of drugs through the region is also of great concern and “it is my hope that this topic will be seriously addressed at the Summit.”

Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency Anthony Johnson

Turning to the economy, Ambassador Johnson said it is clear that a path has to be found to ensure that the world gets out of the economic recession, and the meeting should look at “the level of funds needed to float the region’s economy.”

He also called for focus to be placed on energy, including measures to encourage greater use of alternative energy to reduce the dependence on fossil fuel.

Ambassador Johnson is part of Jamaica’s delegation to the Fifth Summit of the Americas, which opens today (April 17) at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Port-of- Spain. Prime Minister, Bruce Golding, heads Jamaican’s mission to the three-day event, which concludes on Sunday (April 19).

The Summit is being organized by the OAS under the theme: ‘Securing our Citizens’ Future by Promoting Human Prosperity, Energy Security and Environmental Sustainability’. Heads of Government and State of the nations of the Western Hemisphere, including United States President, Barack Obama, are expected to be in attendance.

The working sessions start on Saturday (April 18) with bilateral discussions, to be followed by the first plenary session, which will address the topic of ‘Human Prosperity’.

The region’s Heads will continue discussions over a working luncheon examining the issue of ‘Environmental Sustainability’. Plenary session two will address ‘Energy Security, to be followed by plenary session three on ‘Democratic Governance and Public Security’.

On Sunday, April 19, the Heads will be in retreat, after which it is expected that the Declaration of Commitment for Port-of-Spain will be signed. The Summit will end on Sunday afternoon with a press conference at the Diplomatic Centre.

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