PRESS RELEASE – A delegation of European diplomats, led by EU Head of Delegation Ambassador Mikael Barfod, met Prime Minister Kenny Anthony in Castries (St Lucia) on 26 April. The delegation included Eric de la Moussaye, Ambassador of France, Lutz Görgens, Ambassador of Germany, Annie McGee, Resident British Commissioner, and Jesús Lavalle Merchán, Charge’ d’Affaires ad interim of Spain.
The meeting was agreed with the Prime Minister in January on the basis of his expectations to have the vacancies of the Police Commissioner and of the Director of Public Prosecutions filled by this time. It was a joint understanding that these recruitments are necessary to launch a proper investigation into the serious allegations of extra judicial killings of 2010-2011 and the IMPACS investigative report, so that due process can be guaranteed.
The European diplomats noted that the vacancy of the Police Commissioner was officially filled from 1 April. They also noted that the recruitment of the Director of Public Prosecution, although delayed, is now underway with interviews scheduled for May.
The European delegation reiterated the importance of the new Director of Public Prosecution (when appointed) taking up allegations of extra judicial killings as a priority and for the government of St Lucia to provide all the necessary resources that the due process will require, in full respect of the independence of the judiciary branch. This would boost the country’s international reputation as regards the upholding of the general principle of rule of law, an intrinsic part of democratic governance.
The European delegation offered support to deal with the general backlogs in the justice system in St Lucia, present in most Caribbean countries, through interventions financed under the Regional Indicative Program from the 11th European Development Fund.
The European Union and its Member States will continue to monitor the follow up given to serious accusations of extra judicial killings in St Lucia.