Region Expresses Sorrow Over Deadly Plane Crash

CARICOM Secretary General Irwin LaRocque (left) and OECS chairman Allen Chastanet offered condolences to the Cuban government and people.


GEORGETOWN, Guyana, Tuesday May 22, 2018
– The Caribbean’s two regional groupings have expressed sorrow at the tragic plane crash in Cuba that claimed the lives of all but two people on board.

Both the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) issued statements expressing condolences to the government and people of Cuba following last Friday’s fatal incident.

The plane crashed shortly after take-off from the Jose Marti International Airport in Havana.

“The Caribbean Community extends its deepest sympathy to the families of the victims and its sincere wishes for the speedy recovery of those passengers who were injured during this unfortunate aviation accident,” CARICOM Secretary-General Ambassador Irwin LaRocque said.

“The people of the Caribbean Community share the grief of the People of Cuba at this moment of national mourning.”

OECS chairman, St Lucia’s Prime Minister Allen Chastanet also spoke to Cuba’s Ambassador to St Lucia Jorge Francisco Soberon Luis after the crash.

“The Cuban people and the St Lucia people have an immensely close bond and it is with deep sorrow that we view the images coming out of Havana….It is a very painful time for the region. As a Caribbean region, we want to express solidarity with the Cuban people as they go through this difficult time,” he said.

“I know the entire OECS is thinking about the impact of this crash on the people of Cuba and we in St Lucia also express our deepest condolences to the Cuban president, Miguel Díaz-Canel, the Government of Cuba and Cuban people. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims’ families who must be suffering immense grief at this time. We pray for their continued strength.”

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