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HomeNewsCaribbean NewsSt Lucia - France to strengthen cooperation in security, health, and education

St Lucia – France to strengthen cooperation in security, health, and education

By Caribbean News Global contributor

CASTRIES, St Lucia – Prime Minister Philip J. Pierre on March 15, 2024, welcomed Gérald Darmanin, minister for the interior and overseas territories of the Republic of France, and his delegation, president Serge Letchimy and the Prefect of Martinique, Jean Christophe Bouvier to Saint Lucia for discussions focused on security, health, education and to enhance bilateral cooperation between the two countries.

Security

Security discussions focused on increasing security measures between Saint Lucia and Martinique, which would require stronger collaboration between the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force and French Security Forces, the Gendarmerie, Navy, and National Police.

Plans were detailed for the establishment of a Canine Unit with full financial support for training and procurement of the Canine and its handler by the Republic of France.

Health 

As it relates to health cooperation, both parties reiterated their dedication to improving healthcare services in Saint Lucia through partnerships with medical institutions in Martinique and Guadeloupe. Discussions included efforts to address outstanding debt owed to the French Government / Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Martinique (CHUM).

Education  

Prime Minister Pierre and Health Minister Moses Jn. Baptiste emphasised their gratitude to the government of Martinique for its involvement in providing healthcare to Saint Lucian citizens and expressed a desire for further collaboration, including the training of nurses and the rebuilding of St Jude Hospital. Plans for joint ventures to introduce new technologies in healthcare were also on the agenda.

Bilateral cooperation

Serge Letchimy, president of the executive council of Martinique, highlighted progress in OECS and CARICOM integration and emphasized territorial diplomacy, proposed enhanced health collaboration, expanded education initiatives, and cultural preservation efforts. Letchimy also called for intensified cooperation in agriculture, research, and security, emphasizing the importance of addressing insecurity for a shared future and strongly suggested the need for more frequent meetings and an international one on security.

Prime Minister Pierre, on behalf of the government of Saint Lucia, expressed gratitude for the “fruitful discussions and underscored the significance of cooperation between Saint Lucia, France and French Overseas Territories in addressing shared challenges and advancing mutual interests.”

 

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