Foreign Secretary statement on British Virgin Islands 29 April 2022

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said:

The arrest yesterday of the Premier of the British Virgin Islands on charges related to drugs trafficking and money undering is extremely concerning and underlines the need for urgent action.

In January 2021, we set out significant concerns about the deteriorating state of governance in the British Virgin Islands, as well as the potential vulnerability of the islands to serious organised crime. The UK Government supported the then Governor’s decision to launch an independent Inquiry into governance of the Territory.

The Inquiry report published today by the Governor shows clearly that substantial legislative and constitutional change is required to restore the standards of governance that the people of the British Virgin Islands are entitled to.

I have instructed the Minister for Overseas Territories to travel to the Territory immediately to speak to the Governor and key stakeholders. We will then announce a clear path forward.

The Overseas Territories are a core part of the UK family. The UK Government is committed to the security and wellbeing of the people of the British Virgin Islands.

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