Jamaica urged to bring to justice those guilty of gang operation killings

May 20, 2011

Jamaica urged to bring to justice those guilty of gang operation killings


23 May – At 6.00 pm the Jamaican authorities declare a one-month state of emergency in the parishes of Kingston and St. Andrew as they try to restore order and capture Christopher Coke, wanted in the USA for drug-trafficking and firearms charges.

23 May – During the day, several police stations are attacked by gunmen; two are burned down. Two police officers are killed in the community of Mountain View during the night. Reports circulate that heavily armed men are manning roadblocks into the Tivoli Gardens community and positioned on the top of buildings in the area.

24 May – Jamaican police and the military initiate a joint operation in the West Kingston community of Tivoli Gardens to arrest Christopher Coke and re-establish order in the community. During the first two days of the operation, at least 74 people, including a member of the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF), were killed and at least 54 people, including 28 members of the security forces, were injured. Only six firearms were recovered during the operation.

27 May -- Journalists are allowed to enter Tivoli Gardens under military escort in a guided tour.

22 June – Christopher Coke is arrested.

22 June - The Jamaican Parliament votes to extend the state of emergency for a further month and to include the parish of St Catherine. The Prime Minister informs the Parliament that 87 firearms had been recovered in West Kingston.

25 June – Christopher Coke is extradited to the United States.

22 July -- The state of emergency ends after a government request for a further one-month extension was rejected by Parliament.

Case study of a killing: 'Young man, aren't you dead yet?' (Case study, 23 May 2010)
Jamaica: Amnesty International welcomes commitment to investigate allegations of human rights abuses by security forces
(Public Statement, 17 March 2011)
Jamaica violence investigation must be thorough (News story, 27 May 2010)