Kingston has accused Washington of
not doing enough to stem the flow of guns into the island.
Jamaica’s Prime Minister Bruce
Golding made the claim during a more than two-hour-long presentation in Parliament.
Golding said that a resolution was
now before the United Nations (UN) for an international convention to restrict
the illegal trafficking in small arms. The prime minister did not say who
brought the resolution to the UN, nor did he hide his dismay about the flow of
guns into Jamaica.
“The overwhelming majority of
guns coming into Jamaica are of United States (US) manufacture,” Golding
“The inflow of guns into
Jamaica is what facilitates most of the murders that are committed. The security
forces recover, on average, 600 guns each year. We suspect that a greater
number enter the island each year, creating an ever-increasing arsenal of
illegal weapons, snuffing out lives with callous brutality,” the prime
minister told Parliament.
Golding also said his Government
intended to renew efforts to “strengthen bilateral cooperation with the US
with a view to addressing the flow of illegal guns from the US to Jamaica with
the same vigour that we seek to apply to the flow of illegal drugs from Jamaica
to the US”.
But US-Jamaica relations were not
all Golding spoke about on crime. He said the controversial anti-crime bills,
as well as anti-gang legislation, would be tabled in Parliament soon.
He accused parliamentarians of
spending “a considerable amount of time shouting at each other, un-willing
to coalesce around any solution, each one proffering his own and proffering
strategies must be appropriate to the crime that has to be fought. For too long
we have allow criminals to test our will and test our willingness to destroy
theirs,” the prime minister added.