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(JAMAICA GLEANER) — Prime Minister Andrew Holness has reported that since the start of the year, a total of 726 persons have been murdered in Jamaica – that’s a one per cent increase when compared with the corresponding period last year or an average of just over three killings per day.
Holness was speaking in Parliament a short while ago as lawmakers debated an extension of the state of emergency declared on July 7 in the St Andrew South police division.
The Prime Minister said, up to yesterday, the St Andrew South police recorded 11 more murders when compared with the similar period last year.
Up to Sunday, there were 95 murders in the division.
St Catherine South is one of several police divisions that have seen an increase in murders since January 1.
The others are: Central Kingston, up by 11; Kingston East, up by nine; and Manchester, which is up by 13.
A total of 1,287 persons were reported killed in Jamaica last year.
Opposition Leader Dr Peter Phillips has indicated that he would support an extension of the SOE “because citizens want some relief from the terror”.
Phillips, however, questioned whether the “sustained and long term” use of the SOE represent the best use of the manpower resources of the security forces.