Tribunal to gross examine human rights violations

St. Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet.

Newly elected St. Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet has announced plans to set up a tribunal to look into the report of gross human rights violations by the Royal St. Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) between 2011-2011 and to present a road map to move forward.

The tribunal will comprise a representative from Britain, the European Union (EU), the United States and another from St. Lucia.

This followed a courtesy call on U.S. Ambassador Linda Tagliatlateala in Bridgetown, Barbados recently.

The United States has told the new Chastanet administration it will not lift sanctions on St. Lucia if it fails to bring to justice those responsible within the Royal St. Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) for gross violations of human rights through credible judicial processes and prosecutions.

The U.S. Department of State suspended assistance to the local police force as a result of “credible evidence of extrajudicial killings of 17 people in 2010-2011 under the former Kenny Anthony government.

The visas of a number of senior police officers to travel to the USA were canceled.

The State Department said: “In accordance with the Department policy and U.S. law, those foreign security force units credibly implicated in gross violations of human rights are ineligible for U.S. assistance, unless the Department determines and reports that the host government is taking effective steps to bring those responsible for justice,” the State Department said.

“We are encouraged by Prime Minister Chastanent’s statements that he is considering the establishment of a tribunal or other forum in which to address the credible allegations of extrajudicial killings committed by the RSLPF personnel,” the State Department said.

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