Jamaica Demands Billions Of Pounds From The UK In Compensation For Slave Trade On The Island

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Jamaica Demands Billions Of Pounds From The UK In Compensation For Slave Trade On The Island

A senior official in the Jamaican government has stated that Jamaica plans to ask the UK for billions of pounds in compensation for the slave trade that affected Jamaica and the ancestors of the people now living in the country.


Olivia Grange, Minister of Sports, Youth and Culture, told Reuters news agency that the compensation payment would ensure justice for centuries of brutality.


She said:


"We are hoping for reparatory justice in all forms that one would expect if they are to really ensure that we get justice from injustices to repair the damages that our ancestors experienced. Our African ancestors were forcibly removed from their home and suffered unparalleled atrocities in Africa to carry out forced labour to the benefit of the British Empire. Redress is well overdue."


Jamaica was one of the central points of the international slave trade and was formerly a British colony before it achieved independence. Around 600,000 Africans were transported to Jamaica before 1807 in order to work on sugar plantations on the island. The descendants of these slaves make up the majority of the Jamaican population today.


The British monarchy remains the head of state in Jamaica and Jamaica remains part of the British Commonwealth.


When slavery was abolished in 1807, the UK took out a 20 million pound loan (which it only finished paying off in 2015) to compensate slave owners who were forced to give up their slaves. Jamaican lawmaker Mike Henry has said that this amount of money, around 7.5 billion pounds today, should be paid to the descendants of the slaves.


He said:


"I am asking for the same amount of money to be paid to the slaves that was paid to the slave owners. I am doing this because I have fought against this all my life, against chattel slavery which has dehumanized human life."


Jamaica retains close ties with the UK and tens of thousands of Jamaicans went to the UK in the 1950s to rebuild Britain after the Second World War.


The British government is yet to comment on the compensation demand.


[h/t: Reuters]


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Thinking Humanity: Jamaica Demands Billions Of Pounds From The UK In Compensation For Slave Trade On The Island
Jamaica Demands Billions Of Pounds From The UK In Compensation For Slave Trade On The Island
A senior official in the Jamaican government has stated that Jamaica plans to ask the UK for billions of pounds in compensation for the slave trade th
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