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Caribbean Updates: Decolonization and Reparations – CPAN (video)

Watch video: CPAN Symposium on Non-Independent Caribbean Territories / Protectorates

Just Caribbean Updates

Panelists at a conference to examine the decolonization movement in the Caribbean discussed human rights, decolonization, independence, and reparations relative to remaining European and American colonies in the region.

Last week’s Caribbean Pan African Network Symposium on Non-Independent Caribbean Territories/Protectorates, moderated by David Comissiong of Barbados: “Our Symposium has been designed to enhance public understanding of the challenges affecting the non-independent Caribbean territories let’s call them what they are colonies it has been designed to Garner support for the decolonization process the decolonization activities that are currently being undertaken by activists all across these 17 territories. It has been designed to foster improved engagement among the Caribbean non-independent territories and the activists um who are carrying carrying out their work in the various territories and it is designed to Foster an understanding of decolonization within the context of reparations and the CPAN campaign for reparations is a big part of our agenda. We strongly believe that the reparations idea and campaign should be Central to the decolonization effort.”

The Caribbean and The World 

  • Vice President Kamala Harris’s visit to Puerto Rico was met with protests organized by local groups advocating for Puerto Rican independence and other causes. The protesters, who are critical of the US’s ongoing occupation of Puerto Rico and its support for Israel, used the visit to voice their discontent with US policies. During the demonstrations, US and colonial Puerto Rican flags were replaced with those of Haiti, Palestine, and the Puerto Rican independence movement. (Black Agenda Report)

  • “Our message should be simple: let Cubans decide the future of Cuba without coercion. It’s time to overcome the objections of a small lobby of hawks and cease a policy that stands against the interests of ordinary Americans and Cubans alike”, argues Bhaskar Sunkara in The Guardian.

  • Anguilla, a small Caribbean island, has seen a significant financial boost from the AI boom, earning about $32 million last year from domain name registrations ending in .ai. This unexpected revenue, over 10 percent of its GDP, is being utilized for various public welfare projects, including free healthcare for seniors, education, airport improvements, sports facilities, and overseas medical treatment funding. (The New York Times)

  • The CARICOM-Japan Friendship celebrates its 30th anniversary, marked by a visit of CARICOM Secretary-General, Dr. Carla Barnett, to Japan. (Kaiteur News)

Climate and Environmental Justice

  • “When everyday people are dying and suffering because of fossil fuels, then it is too late for just a transition”, stated Melinda Jankis at her presentation in the JET’s Climate Litigation Seminar. Watch the full speech.

  • A new Inter-American Development Bank guide for journalists brings together insights and best practices regarding climate change and biodiversity. Download

  • Guyana is focusing on eco-tourism by leveraging its rich rainforests and biodiversity, reports Cari-Bois. (Global Voices)

  • Dr. Daniel Friess’s research on mangroves highlights their significance for coastal ecosystems and communities. Friess’s work in mangrove conservation and restoration demonstrates the ecosystems’ impact on local livelihoods and the environment, including challenges related to sea level rise and habitat loss. (Repeating Islands)

Human Rights

  • The Caribbean Pan African Network (CPAN) hosted a symposium focusing on decolonization and reparations, discussing the status of non-independent territories in the Caribbean. This event, marking the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade, featured discussions on human rights and independence across several Caribbean territories and language zones. (St Vincent Times)

  • Antigua and Barbuda attorney general Steadroy Benjamin plans to introduce legislation aimed at holding parents accountable for their children’s violent actions. (AntiguaNewsroom)

  • Tate and Lyle, a British sugar refiner, is facing demands for reparations from Caribbean nations like Guyana for profiting from indentured labor. Indentured laborers, mostly from India, replaced freed slaves in plantations, often under deceitful conditions. A formal call for reparations is expected as part of revised demands by Caribbean nations, which now include indentured labor. (The Telegraph)

Democratic Governance 

  • Jamaica’s government condemned the racist remarks made by the country’s Conservative party’s biggest donor, Frank Hester, amid concerns about a contract it signed with his digital health company, reports the Guardian.

  • Civil society activists in Guyana protested former US President Bill Clinton’s visit, highlighting his detrimental role in Haiti’s destabilization. The protest, organized by groups including Red Thread and the Haiti Support Group (Guyana), aimed to show solidarity with Haiti and criticize the Dominican Republic’s discriminatory policies. (Kaietuer News)

Public Security

  • Belize authorities declared a state of emergency in parts of Belize City and the Cayo District , in response to an increase in gang-related activities. The measure aims to target specific individuals contributing to violence, asserting that the government and police are making efforts to support youth and reduce crime through interventions and employment opportunities. (Jamaica Gleaner)

  • Jamaicans must have access to information “in cases of police-involved shootings to prevent misinformation and uphold transparency”, said Jamaicans for Justice in relation to the fatal shooting of Romario Sterling.


  • The discovery of vast oil reserves in Guyana, positioning it among the top in the Americas, signals a potential economic transformation. However, challenges arise from an ExxonMobil agreement seen as too favorable to the multinational, forfeiting significant revenue for Guyana. This development reignites old territorial disputes, notably with Venezuela, and draws international attention from major powers like the US, China, and Russia, complicating Guyana’s path to leveraging its oil wealth amidst geopolitical tensions. (Phenomenal World)


  • Brian Heap, an influential figure in Jamaican theater and education, passed away at age 73. Heap made a significant impact on Jamaica’s cultural landscape over four decades, notably reviving the University Players and directing numerous plays and pantomimes. He was an educator at heart, teaching at various institutions and contributing to drama in education. (Global Voices)

  • “Small Islands” is a photographic journey by Emily Stein, capturing the vibrant spirit of Caribbean youth through dance and movement. Traveling across several islands, Stein showcases the cultural richness and communal joy found in these communities, highlighting the creativity and resilience of young people in settings filled with natural beauty and color. (Creative Review)

  • The IDB Staff Association Art Gallery presents “Human Being” by Costa Rican artist Osvaldo Sequeira, showcasing a new collection that explores the human form as a means of expression. (Repeating Islands)


  • The University of Malta’s Islands and Small States Institute is now offering online or blended Master by Research and PhD programs in Islands and Small States studies. These interdisciplinary courses cover a range of topics including economic, social, environmental, and political issues. Scholarships are available for eligible students, including those from Small Island Developing States. Deadlines for expressions of interest and applications are April 30 and July 24, 2024, respectively. Learn More.

  • World Food Programme launched the seventh round of the Caribbean Food Security and Livelihoods Survey to determine how climate change and cost of living increases impact Caribbean people. Take this quick survey to share your thoughts on how you are affected.

  • The US Embassy in Jamaica is inviting individuals, community-based organizations, and NGOs to submit concept notes for grants ranging from $10,000 to $25,000. The grants aim to support programs focusing on youth development, climate/environment/energy, human rights & democracy, combating financial scamming & criminal activity, economic prosperity, global health, and gender issues. The deadline for submitting concept notes is April 22, 2024. Learn more. 

  • The Organization of American States (OAS) and Universidad del Desarrollo (UDD) in Chile are offering scholarships for a certificate in Global Innovation and Entrepreneurship, online for 4 months, in English. Applications are due by April 30, 2024, and are open to CARICOM countries’ citizens, and members of the OAS. Learn more.

  • The IHE Delft Water and Development Partnership Programme, supported by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, is offering scholarships for MSc in Water and Sustainable Development. These scholarships, for full or partial funding, aim at capacity strengthening in specified regions. Eligible countries include those from the Middle East, Horn of Africa, Sahel, and Small Island Developing States. Applicants must conduct their research in their home country, associated with the program’s projects, and participate in seminars. Learn more.

  • Journalists have an opportunity to amplify the sustainability efforts of Small Island Developing States (SIDS) by participating in a fellowship at the SIDS4 Conference in Antigua and Barbuda from May 27-30, 2024. This fellowship will provide full funding for journalists to cover the event and share stories of sustainable development from small islands, highlighting their unique challenges and innovative solutions. Apply.

  • The Global Legal Action Network is looking for a Junior Legal Associate or Paralegal. This position is located on the island of Barbuda or Antigua. If in Antigua, the role will involve frequent travel between Antigua and Barbuda, with occasional stays in Barbuda required. Applications close on April 5th. Learn more.

  • A 5-day Permaculture Course is now open for registration in Jamaica, running from May 22-27, 2024. This course, hosted at the Artvark Centre in St. Ann, offers a comprehensive introduction to permaculture design principles, soil management, water systems, and more, with Earle Rahaman-Noronha as the trainer. Participants can choose to attend the course daily or opt for a full retreat that includes accommodation. Costs are USD 260 for the course only and USD 600 for the full retreat. Learn more

  • The Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas offers a free, multilingual online course titled “Freedom of Expression, Artificial Intelligence, and Elections.” The course, in collaboration with UNESCO, UNDP, and backed by the Electoral Assistance Division, runs from April 2 to 30, 2024, and is available in English, Portuguese, Spanish, French, and Arabic. Register.


  • The University of the West Indies (The UWI) Diplomatic Academy of the Caribbean (DAOC)herebyinforms that the second edition of its training module Energy Diplomacy: Foreign and Security Policy Contexts in the Caribbean, originally scheduled to take place virtually from the 20th to 23rd May, 2024, has been postponed. It will now be held virtually from 17th to 20th September, 2024. Register.
  • Victoria Mendizabal contributed research and drafting assistance this newsletter.

Just Caribbean Updates/Jordana Timerman
https://caribbeannewsupdates.blogspot.com 04/08/2024

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