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JAMAICA | Police probe more murders in Jamaica

Featured JAMAICA | Police probe more murders in Jamaica
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Jun 13, CMC – Jamaica police were Tuesday investigating the murders of four people, including a teenage boy and girl in Hanover on the northwestern tip of the island where at least 36 people have been killed in that parish so far this year.

The Corporate Communications Unit (CCU) said the latest incident occurred after 6:00am (local time) and that the police are still trying to ascertain the details surrounding the incident.

They have identified those killed as 34-year-old Erica Lesley, 17-year-old Ian Walters, 14-year-old Kertina Walters and Curtis Walters was not disclosed.

The murders occurred even as National Security Minister Robert Montague Monday invited the Opposition security spokesman Peter Bunting to discussions on national security concerns.

A statement issued by the National Security Ministry noted that Montague in a letter to Bunting, indicated he would welcome suggestions and ideas which can help to reduce crime through bipartisan efforts.

Montague is seeking to “find common ground to address the root causes of crime, and not the symptoms,” but the main opposition People’s National Party (PNP) has indicated that the current crime situation requires far more than a meeting between the minister and his Opposition counterpart.

“The People’s National Party (PNP) is willing to participate in a national effort to develop an effective plan to stop the bloodletting. What we are seeking is not a conversation between the minister and the Opposition spokesman, nor are we seeking a conversation between the PNP and the JLP (Jamaica Labour Party) in this matter.

“There are other critical stakeholders, including for example, security experts at our universities, the trade unions, the PSOJ, the peace management initiative and other NGOs that have an interest in this matter. The time is now to stop ignoring this problem and to stop making flip political commentary about this very serious matter that is before us,” JLP and opposition Leader, Dr. Peter Phillips told a news conference.

Last weekend, figures released by the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) showed that nearly 600 people were murdered in Jamaica during the first six months of this year.

It said that between the period January 1 to June 3, a total of 585 people were murdered representing a 16 per cent increase over the corresponding period last year.

According to the figures 136 persons were killed during the month of May, 18 more than the number of persons killed in May last year and 26 more than the number recorded in May 2015.

Bunting said that based on his calculations, approximately 639 persons have been killed since the start of the year, including 54 murders reportedly committed during the first 10 days of this month.

“The Opposition is alarmed at the spiralling murder rate, and, really, the lack of a coherent response from the Government on the issue,” said Bunting, adding “we need an emergency allocation of resources to dramatically improve the presence of the police and military”.

Last year, Jamaica recorded 1,350 murders with the police claiming that 65 per cent of these murders were linked to gangs.

Last modified onTuesday, 13 June 2017 17:27
  • Countries: Jamaica