Sun | Jul 21, 2019

T&T knocks United States over trafficking report

Published:Tuesday | June 25, 2019 | 12:24 AM

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC):

The United States government says it looks forward to working with the Trinidad and Tobago government after Port-of-Spain reacted angrily to a State Department report that placed the oil-rich twin-island republic among several Caribbean countries not in compliance with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking in persons (TIP).

Of the Caribbean countries listed in the 2019 Trafficking in Persons Report, only the Bahamas and Guyana “fully” met the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking.

The report noted that Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Jamaica, Haiti, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago had been placed on Tier 2.

Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley, speaking at a ceremony last Friday, wondered whether the US was doing much better with its own migration and TIP situation.

“Well, if I was marking their paper, what would I give them? They have the same problem we have – thousands of migrants rushing your border wanting to come into your country because they see a greener grass on your side than on their side. That is the number one political issue in America,” Rowley said.

”Children are dying on the border, some of them in cages, hundreds of people in a room that is built for 10, the temperature is 41 degrees and, of course, they have a bigger military, they have a bigger security system, they have an army, a navy, an air force and they got a bigger treasury than Trinidad and Tobago,” he said. “How have they handled their situation better than ours?”