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Barbados – USA discusses areas for security assistance

By Julie Carrington

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, (GIS) – The United States of America’s steadfast support to the region in securing borders, provision of training and other operational and technical support cannot be underestimated.

Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley discussed with Deputy Commander of the United States Southern Command, Vice Admiral Alvin Holsey, the need for further assistance during a courtesy call at the end of the closing ceremony for Exercise Tradewinds 2024, at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, Two Mile Hill, St Michael.

The officials touched on a range of issues including the need for crisis response, particularly during the upcoming hurricane season; cyber security; building regional capacity; and the rising incidence of gun violence across the region.

Prime Minister Mottley noted that the just concluded Exercise Tradewinds was held in Barbados at the right time as it “created heightened awareness” among law enforcers about cyber security and other threats to the island’s stability.

Vice Admiral Holsey expressed his willingness to work closely with Barbados to shore up its cyber security efforts and assured Prime Minister Mottley that “if it is one of those areas that you have to ask for support, we’ll do it.”

They also spoke about the rising homicides by gunfire across the region with Mottley stressing that there was a need to teach young people how to use weapons responsibly.

United States ambassador to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Roger Nyhus, who was also present at the courtesy call, disclosed that the embassy had set up a youth violence mini task force to bring programmes offered in the United States to the region.

The construction of a new headquarters for the Barbados Defence Force and securing additional support for the Regional Security System were also some of the matters discussed.

Also attending the meeting were attorneygGeneral Dale Marshall; minister of foreign affairs and foreign trade, Kerrie Symmonds; minister of home affairs and information, Wilfred Abrahams; acting chief of staff of the Barbados Defence Force, Lieutenant Colonel Carlos Lovell; and other officials from the United States Army, Navy and Coast Guard.



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