#Providenciales, February 3, 2019 – Turks and Caicos Islands – On the 24-26 January 2019, meetings were held between representatives of The Turks and Caicos Islands and The Commonwealth of The Bahamas on opportunities to work together on border control.
- The Turks and Caicos Islands’ Deputy Premier and Minister of Border Control and Employment and the Bahamas’ Minister of Foreign Affairs, along with Senior Officials from both jurisdictions, met in Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands, from 24 to 26 January 2019, to discuss issues relating to border control and other matters of mutual interest.
- In opening the meetings, the Hon. Deputy Premier thanked The Bahamas for their willingness to collaborate with the Turks and Caicos Islands and both delegations noted that, by bringing together experience and expertise from the two jurisdictions, a more effective border control regime could be implemented for their respective countries. In this context, the Turks and Caicos Islands and The Bahamas committed to continue discussions on practical actions to give effect to this initiative.
- The delegations discussed collaboration on a wide range of issues, including mutual assistance and cooperation in border control efforts, information and intelligence sharing, training, joint operations and synergizing of operational strategies.
- A technical working group has been established to make recommendations for a memorandum of understanding that will provide a possible legal framework for such cooperation, subject to the internal governmental approvals processes in each jurisdiction.
- The delegations agreed that the talks were very positive and constructive and welcomed the opportunity to work together as neighboring countries.
- The talks were followed by a tour of the Detention Centre, the Radar Station, illegal development sites and a maritime tour around the island of Providenciales with the Marine Branch of the Turks and Caicos Police Force.
- The Bahamas was represented by the Hon. Darren A Henfield, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Captain Godfrey Rolle (retired), Royal Bahamas Defence Force, Lieutenant Commander Floyd Moxey, Royal Bahamas Defence Force, Mr. Loren Klein, Legal Consultant, Office of the Attorney General and Ministry of Legal Affairs, and Mr. Michael Guy, Foreign Services Officer, Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
- The Turks and Caicos Islands was represented by the Hon. Sean Astwood, Deputy Premier & Minister of Border Control & Employment Services, the Hon. Rhondalee Braithwaite Knowles, Attorney General, Mrs. Susan Malcolm, Permanent Secretary, Minister of Border Control & Employment Services, Mrs. Sharon Taylor and Mrs. Althea Been both Deputy Permanent Secretaries in the Minister of Border Control & Employment Services, Mr. Derek Been, Director of Immigration, Mr. Tito Forbes, Enforcement and Compliance Manager, Mr. James Smith, Commissioner of Police, ACP Rodney Adams, Chair of the Joint Law Enforcement Team, ASP Darron Williams, Operation Guardian, Ms. Cynara John, Head of Secretariat and Ms. Bernadya Smith, Executive Administrator at the Minister of Border Control & Employment Service.