French membership can strengthen OECS, says St Lucia ambassador

JuneSoomer-1Castries, St Lucia — Qualified citizens resident in Martinique may be able to make use of the new economic space opened-up by the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) Economic Union, an OECS ambassador says.

Saint Lucia’s ambassador to the OECS and CARICOM, Dr June Soomer, has called for more research into the shared history between Saint Lucia and Martinique, following Martinique’s associate membership within the OECS.

Soomer said Martinique’s inclusion makes it even more necessary to conduct much-needed research into the shared history between the neighboring islands.

Soomer said she’s written much about slave women from Martinique who successfully crossed the small channel separating the two islands, to evade both French and British troops. She also supported calls for more research into the birth of Empress Josephine, widely said to have been born at Morne Paix Bouche, Babonneau.

According to Soomer, Saint Lucia and Martinique already have strong and deep ties, but the entry of Martinique into the OECS now opens the way for Guadeloupe, which will help forge and deepen unity and integration of the French and English-speaking people of the Eastern Caribbean island chain.

She said the fact that Saint Lucian citizens are also citizens of all other OECS member-states opens new horizons and possibilities, and that even qualified Saint Lucian citizens resident in Martinique will be able to make use of the new economic space opened-up by the OECS Economic Union.

Meanwhile, Soomer also disclosed that French Guiana has indicated to the Georgetown-based CARICOM Secretariat that it intends to formally apply for membership of CARICOM.

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