PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) — The Trinidad and Tobago government has “registered” its concern with the British government over a recent advisory from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) indicating that “terrorists are likely to try to carry out attacks in Trinidad & Tobago”.
In a travel advisory issued last Friday, the FCO said that “there is a general threat from terrorism” in Trinidad and Tobago and that these attacks “could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by foreigners.
“Although there have been no recent attacks in Trinidad and Tobago, more than 100 Trinidad and Tobago nationals have travelled to Syria and Iraq to fight along with Daesh (formerly referred to as ISIL) and are likely to pose a security threat on return,” the advisory warned.
But, in a statement issued late Tuesday night, the Keith Rowley government said that it was “concerned about the content of the said advisory under that heading” and had held talks with the British High Commission in Trinidad and Tobago on the matter.
The statement said that the government “was informed that there was no recent update to the advisory and that that language on terrorism was included in May 2017.
“The Government has registered its concern at the specific language used in the advisory and has confirmed that there is no intelligence and in particular, no specific intelligence, which provoked the use of this language.
“The Government, through the Ministry of National Security, and in particular the various law enforcement authorities in Trinidad and Tobago, continues to work closely with our international allies, including the British, with respect to counter terrorism and the sharing of intelligence, all aimed at ensuring that our citizens and persons in Trinidad and Tobago are safe.
“Our law enforcement authorities continue to monitor the situation and to work assiduously to keep our citizens and visitors safe against any potential terrorist activity,” the statement added.
In the advisory, the FCO said that there is also a threat from individuals who may have been inspired by terrorist groups, including Daesh and al Qaeda, to carry out so-called 'lone actor' attacks targeting public events or places.
“On January 30, 2017, the Ministry of National Security of Trinidad and Tobago confirmed that it works closely with international partners – especially the United States, Britain and Canada – in strategic areas such as intelligence and information sharing on people who are found to be associated with any terrorist group, whether locally or internationally.
“There's a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals, from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria. You should be vigilant at this time. Find out more about the global threat from terrorism, how to minimise your risk and what to do in the event of a terrorist attack.”