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Jamaica Engages CARICOM And OAS To Promote Dialogue In Venezuela

Jamaica Engages CARICOM And OAS To Promote Dialogue In Venezuela
Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith (left), addresses journalists at a recent press briefing held at the Ministry’s office in New Kingston. At right is Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Ambassador Marcia Gilbert-Roberts.
(Media Credit: Mark Bell)

KINGSTON (JIS) -- Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith, says Jamaica will continue to engage CARICOM and the Organization of American States (OAS) members to promote dialogue and a peaceful resolution to the situation in Venezuela. Speaking to journalists at a recent press briefing at the Ministry in New Kingston, the Minister said the situation in Venezuela continues to be of international concern, given the strong friendship and relations between the two countries. “We have consistently maintained the position that Venezuela should engage with its own national stakeholders through an inclusive and mediated national dialogue process to resolve their domestic challenges,” she noted. The Minister said Jamaica adheres to the principle of non-interference as a matter of policy and “(does) not seek to tell a government what to do in their domestic space”.

“In keeping with the fundamental principles established in the OAS Democratic Charter and in keeping with our own Foreign Policy principles of upholding democracy and the rule of law, we recently joined other hemispheric partners in supporting an OAS resolution to that effect,” she added.

The Minister said that Jamaica’s primary concern “resides with encouraging a solution in the interest of social and economic development, stability and the well-being of the people of Venezuela”.

Meanwhile, Senator Johnson Smith said that the Ministry is in touch with the Embassy of Jamaica in Caracas, Venezuela.

“We are monitoring the situation closely and we will take such steps that are necessary to protect our nationals and to protect our staff as may become necessary as the situation unfolds,” she added.