PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, CMC – The Trinidad and Tobago government says it is taken aback by the latest travel advisory issued by the United States that urges Americans to stay away from the capital as violence and shootings occur regularly.
While Washington maintained a Level 2 advisory for Trinidad and Tobago, it issued a Level 4 advisory for Port of Spain that advises US citizens not to travel there.
Further it said US government personnel are prohibited from travelling to several areas including all beaches and that “violent crime, such as murder, robbery, assault, sexual assault, home invasion, and kidnapping, is common.”
“It added that gang activity, such as narcotics trafficking, is common and that a significant portion of violent crime is gang-related.
“Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, local government facilities, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, major sporting and cultural events, educational institutions, airports, and other public areas.”
But National Security Minister Fitzgerald Hinds said Trinidad and Tobago has not had any major terrorist activity “for many, many years, perhaps not since 1990.
“We have had a little bombings about the place, unfortunately someone lost a leg…and we haven’t had that experience and thank God, I was a little bit taken aback,” Hinds said, adding that the government continues to work alongside the United States and other friendly governments in dealing with crime and that terrorism is not unique to Trinidad and Tobago.
“But yes I was a little bit taken aback with this major focus on terrorism bearing in mind that terrorism is an opportunist activity and wherever they get an opportunity to do something they do it anywhere in the world and in that sense Trinidad and Tobago is just as vulnerable as every other country anywhere in this world,” Hinds added.
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