Cuba and Jamaica partner in fighting organised crime
The two countries will sign agreements aimed at combating drug trafficking and other forms of organised crime.
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Wednesday September 7, 2011 – Jamaica and Cuba are set to sign two agreements to help them battle organised crime, in wake of a growing number of illicit drugs and weapons trafficking groups using the countries’ maritime and airspace to move drugs and firearms in and out of Jamaica, Haiti and the Bahamas.
Minister of National Security Senator Dwight Nelson is in Cuba for the signing of the Operational Agreement for Maritime Cooperation and the Operational Police Cooperation Agreement that seek to strengthen bilateral and multilateral relationships.
Since 2006, the Jamaican and Cuban authorities have provided mutual support in the identification, tracking and apprehension of Jamaicans involved in the trafficking of illicit drugs and firearms.
Minister Nelson says a formal and structured relationship between the Jamaican and Cuban law enforcement entities is likely to improve the flow of information and intelligence.
That, he said, would improve the fight against organised crime, particularly efforts to combat the illicit trade in small arms and drugs.
"These agreements are intended not just to streamline the flow, but to increase information and intelligence sharing between Jamaica and Cuba on the movement of guns and drugs and the groups involved in their movement between the two countries,” he noted.
In November last year, an exploratory meeting was held between a delegation from Jamaica’s Ministry of National Security and officials from the Ministry of the Interior in Cuba in relation to maritime and police cooperation.
Arising out of that meeting, both parties agreed to pursue five agreements: an Operational Agreement for Maritime Cooperation; Operational Police Cooperation Agreement; Memorandum of Understanding on Counter Narcotics and Transnational Organised Crime; Agreement on the Mutual legal Assistance in Criminal Matters; and Agreement on the Execution of Criminal Sentences.
The Operational Maritime and Police Cooperation Agreements which Minister Nelson will sign during this week’s visit to Cuba incorporated all but the last two agreements. The other two will be pursued at a later date.