US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo this morning said the United States has no intent to divide CARICOM.
Mr. Pompeo made the statement at a joint press conference with Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holdness in Jamaica.
His statement came in response to criticism leveled at the US over its decision to invite specific CARICOM member states to a high-level meeting with him during his Jamaican visit.
CARICOM Chairman and Barbadian Prime Minister Mia Motley was the first to raise concern about the meeting and made it clear that she would not allow her Foreign Minister to attend.
But today, the US Secretary of State sought to offer assurances to the countries of CARICOM.
“There is no intent from the United States to divide CARICOM. Not yesterday, Not today and Not tomorrow. We want all of the countries of this region to prosper and be successful. We know that countries in the region will agree with the United States on certain positions from time to time and disagree with us from time to time…we want to invite them all to be part of the economic prosperity and security zone that is this region”, Pompeo said.
The Secretary of State said his government remains open to meeting with all of the CARICOM member states and have conversations with them on various issues.
Following the Barbados Government’s decision not to be part of the meeting with Pompeo, a number of other CARICOM states backed that position, while some others that were invited to the meeting went ahead with their plans to meet.