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Chang urges region to confront security threats in 2019

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

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KINGSTON, Jamaica — Minister of National Security Dr Horace Chang says transnational organised crime and the connected high rates of crime and violence, human trafficking and the imminent threat posed by cybercriminals are some of the challenges that the region must confront in 2019.

Chang noted that in Jamaica and the wider CARICOM region, the security threats that are unique to small island states demand the persistent attention of policymakers.

He was addressing the opening of the United States of America (USA)/Jamaica Defence and Security three-day seminar, held at the Directorate of Training and Doctrine Auditorium, Up Park Camp today.

It is jointly organised by the William J Perry Centre for Hemispheric Defence Studies and the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF).

The minister said that according to Researcher, Dr R Evan Ellis, the security environment of the region is shaped by three persistent, interdependent, albeit evolving, challenges – climate, migration and criminal flows.

“It is, therefore, fitting that we will commence 2019 with a strategic focus on the defence and security threats impacting the region,” Chang said.

The minister pointed out that the seminar is a demonstration of the Forces' commitment to developing sustainable solutions to long-standing and emerging problems impacting Jamaica and the wider Caribbean region.

Chang argued that the hosting of the seminar could not be timelier, as the Americas is currently facing numerous security and defence challenges.

He said that this exchange of perspectives and experiences will allow persons to contemplate new policies and approaches to achieve safety and security at the national, regional and international levels.

The minister emphasised that security does not exist in a vacuum, as insecurity and instability in one country can have significant implications for citizens in countries thousands of miles away. Over the next three days, the presentations, discussions and exercises will focus on: 'National Security and Defence'; 'Transnational Threats and Organised Crime'; and 'Evolving and Future Trends'.

“I am confident that the seminar participants, who represent a wide cross section of ministries, departments and agencies, are all keen to engage in the diverse, interesting and relevant subject matters,” Chang said.

“The varied perspectives that will be brought out in your discussions can only enrich the understanding and provide new insights that will enable us to eradicate crime and violence from the Jamaican society,” he added.

— JIS


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