Prime Minister Allen Chastanet has thanked United States President, Donald Trump, for the support and leadership he has been providing in the Caribbean.
Trump on Friday hosted the leaders of Jamaica, Bahamas, Haiti, Dominican Republic and Saint Lucia.
“The United States is our biggest trading partner,” Chastanet told the US media covering the meeting.
He observed that the US had also benefitted from trade with the region.
Chastanet said he and the other Caribbean leaders looked forward to the discussions with the US leader to see how they could enhance their relationship to their mutual benefit.
He was quoted by the South Florida Sun Sentinel as saying that it has been since the Reagan administration that the U.S. has taken an interest in the Caribbean.
According to the newspaper, Chastanet acknowledged that Trump’s invitation was likely due to their support of the U.S. stance against Venezuela at the Organization of American States.
He also acknowledged that not all countries in the region agree with the U.S. call for Maduro’s ouster.
“I think we all recognize there’s a problem in Venezuela. Most people recognize the need for new elections,” the South Florida Sun Sentinel quoted Chastanet as saying.
He said any disagreement they have is in how that will play out.
“The world remains divided on that. I think there is a growing consensus that there needs to be fresh elections in Venezuela to resolve the humanitarian crisis,” Chastanet stated.
Trinidad and Tobago’s Prime Minister, Doctor Keith Rowley, who was not invited to the meeting with the US leader, declared ahead of the gathering that the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) countries that have gone to meet with Trump are the ones who have agreed to be a part of the Lima Group.
“And what is the objective of the Lima Group? The objective of the Lima Group is regime change in Venezuela,” he was quoted by CMC News as saying.
The former leader of the Lucian Peoples Movement, Therold Prudent, said he was concerned about the Trump meeting.
Prudent expressed the hope that the Saint Lucia Prime Minister would not voice support for a regime change in Venezuela.
As far as the former LPM leader was concerned, Saint Lucia should have no part of any US plan for military intervention in Venezuela.