Jamaica hosts OPCW training in Runaway Bay

Jamaica recently hosted a training session organized by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the United Kingdom in Runaway Bay, St. Ann Parish.

The OPCW's 5th Assistance Protection Training for States Parties in the Caribbean subregion took place between October 14 and October 18. Since 2008, the U.K. backed the project with the provision of experts and financial support.

The first OPCW training for the Caribbean subregion was prompted by the 2007 Cricket World Cup in the West Indies. The subregion is comprised of Trinidad and Tobago, the Grenadines, St. Vincent, St. Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, Guyana, Grenada, Dominica, Barbados, Antigua and Barbuda and Jamaica. Also taking part in the training were representatives from the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency and the Caribbean Community.

The OPCW said that CARICOM and CDEMA's participation in the training helped to strengthen the development of the subregion's capability to respond to a chemical attack.

Desmond Gilmore, the mayor of St. Ann, and Col. Patrick Brown, the U.K. Defence Attache, made statements during the training's opening ceremony. Their statements, along with statements from the CARICOM and CDEMA representatives, noted the OPCW's role in supporting the region's capability against attacks.

The OPCW also co-organized a workshop on assistance and protection for States Parties in the Latin America and Caribbean region between October 15 and October 17 in Buenos Aires. Argentina's National Authority helped to organize the event which received financial support from the European Union.