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Foreign Affairs Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett yesterday told media operatives that her Ministry did not have any reports of Guyanese in Barbados experiencing any difficulties.David Thompson “I know there have been inquiries at the consulate and when those questions are being asked our honorary consulate in Barbados will answer…We certainly don’t have any reports here but like I said once they are Guyanese they are always welcomed home.”The comments come on the heels of comments by the party’s General Secretary Donald Ramotar who had said that the Barbadian Government is using Guyanese as the scapegoat for that country’s current economic situation.The Barbadian Government has embarked on a campaign to rid the island state of illegal nationals, most of whom are Guyanese and St Vincentians.There are reports of raids on the properties occupied by mostly Guyanese of East Indian origin.The move has been criticised by several prominent persons, including CARICOM Secretary General Edwin Carrington, and the Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Ralph Gonsalves.According to the PPP General Secretary, the position that Barbados is taking as it relates to non-Barbadian CARICOM citizens, particularly Guyanese, is threatening the very existence of CARICOM.Some Guyanese deportees about to board an airplane “The fact that the Barbados Government – and I would not say the Barbados people – is targeting Guyanese does not augur well for CARICOM integration,” Ramotar told this newspaper.He said that very soon the Barbadian authorities will try to make Guyanese the excuse for all the problems that the society is experiencing.Ramotar had said that there is a history to the actions of the Barbadians.He pointed out that Guyanese and other Caribbean nationals have been subjected to some terrible treatment in Barbados.“There is even talk about a Guyanese bench at the Barbados airport which clearly shows that the present government has been pulling towards this kind of xenophobia in the society.”“Now in particular,Cheap Jerseys Authentic, with the economic downturn that is having a significant effect on the Barbados economy,Cheap NFL Jerseys Wholesale, Guyanese are being made the scapegoats,” Ramotar told Kaieteur News.The comments by the PPP General Secretary clearly points to a feeling that Guyanese were experiencing difficulties in Barbados.Only recently Billy Edwards, 19,Wholesale NFL Jerseys China, who is originally from Rosignol,Cheap Authentic Jerseys, West Bank Berbice,Wholesale NFL Jerseys, and who was residing legally in Barbados, opted to pay his own passage back to his homeland after he and three of his friends were brutally beaten by the Barbados police when they identified themselves as Guyanese.Edwards returned home over the weekend and visited this newspaper yesterday to give a harrowing account of his ordeal.He told Kaieteur News that he and some of his Guyanese friends were hanging out in Bridgetown,Cheap NBA Jerseys China, the island’s capital, on Saturday night when they were confronted by a group of plainclothes police ranks.Since the men did not identify themselves as policemen, the Guyanese enquired from them, the reason for stopping them.This turned out to be their mistake since the policemen, recognizing their Guyanese accent, became aggressive.As the Barbadian authorities tighten the screws on illegal immigrants, paranoia is the common feeling on many Guyanese residing on the island without legal status.Many of them remain in hiding and are fearful that the authorities will soon catch up with them.Even those who have spent in excess of five years on the island are fearful that the new edict by Prime Minister David Thompson will effectively lead to their deportation.Thompson had declared a crackdown to rid the island of illegal immigrants and has given those who qualify to remain on the island up to the end of this year to regularize their status.There are reports of Guyanese and other illegal Caribbean nationals jumping through bus windows to escape immigration authorities on the island.Even worse are reports that many tradesmen flee their worksite whenever the authorities swoop down on illegal immigrants.At least two Guyanese carpenters claim they have lost money, having invested it in legal fees to legalise their status in Barbados.“We paid a lawyer to look after our work permits but the people even investigating him,” one of the carpenters told Kaieteur News by telephone.The move by the Barbados government has been criticized by several persons including CARICOM Secretary General Edwin Carrington and Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
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