Guyana backs Trinidad state of emergency
GEORGETOWN, Guyana, Wednesday August 24, 2011 – Guyana says it supports the move by the Trinidad and Tobago government to implement a state of emergency to clamp down on murders and other violent crimes in the twin-island republic.
“The Government of Guyana shares the view that societies must not be held to ransom by criminal elements and fully supports the action of the Government of Trinidad and Tobago to restore order and to bring those responsible to justice,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement yesterday.
It said that in the face of acts of violence which have disrupted several communities in recent times, such a move was justified. There were more than 10 murders over a period of a few days last week.
The state of emergency, which gives giving military personnel powers to search and seize and powers of arrest, went into effect at midnight on Sunday. Initially, it was limited to certain crime “hot spots”, but it has since been extended to the entire country.
The measure includes a 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew for specific parts of the country.
Anyone caught on the streets in curfew areas during curfew hours are subject to arrest, but National Security Minister Brigadier John Sandy said the ill trying to get to hospitals will be escorted if needed.
A booth has also been set up outside the domestic terminal of the Piarco International Airport to provide curfew permits to ensure citizens get to their destinations safely.