Port of Spain akin to being under house areas
Prelude to Summit of the Americas
By Tusika Martin
With two days before the opening of the Summit of the Americas, preparations are moving apace for the highly anticipated event in the twin-island republic of Trinidad and Tobago.
While there is heightened security, local residents are complaining bitterly that the new American President will be in their homeland and they will not be able to get a glimpse of him.
One Trinidadian writer described the scene on the island for the summit as being under ‘house arrest.’
Police and soldiers are patrolling the streets both in the day and nights as the summit nears. Even vagrants are being removed from the streets and taken to other villages, much to the annoyance of some locals in those communities.
Yesterday, Kaieteur News visited the Hyatt Hotel, where the summit is being hosted as final preparations are being made even as the hotel hosts a regional youth forum and a private sector meeting.
The regional private sector meeting will be focusing on issues such as challenges and opportunities in the current economic environment and impact of the economic crisis on promoting and protecting the human rights of all citizens in particular migrants, children and other vulnerable groups.
On the other hand, the youths will be deliberating how ICT can build an alliance for young Americas, to the use of ICT to foster youth entrepreneurship, surviving the storm: the impact of growing economic crisis on youths, among other topics.
Both the youth forum and the private sector meeting will be opened today.
On Monday during a press briefing at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, media coordinator for the Summit of the Americas, Felipe Noguera, said that an expected 1,200 media operatives from 34 countries will be in Trinidad for the summit.
The media centre was officially opened yesterday with the accreditation centre now operating on a 24-hour basis.
The highlight for Easter Monday in Trinidad was the arrival of cruise ships, ‘Caribbean Princess’ and ‘Carnival Victory.’
Having sailed from San Juan, Puerto Rico, the two vessels are now moored alongside the Hyatt Regency Hotel.
The two cruise liners are providing sleeping accommodation for delegates and journalists participating in the summit. They are expected to pay between US$225 and US$750 each night on the gigantic vessels.
The two ships were rented by the Government of Trinidad to accommodate hotel overflows for this week’s event.
The Caribbean Princess is accommodating delegations, international organisations and persons attending the private sector and youth forum.
Foreign media representatives and participants in the civil society forum for the Summit of the Americas will be accommodated on the Carnival Victory.