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State of emergency declared in St. James, Jamaica

Soldiers have descended on areas of St. James from this morning (18 January) carrying out searches.

Some rights have been suspended and security significantly increased, including the right to search places without a warrant.

322 murders were recorded in St. James by the end of 2017, 67 more than in 2016.

The US Embassy in Kingston has issued a warning to citizens providing advisory actions, monitor local media for updates, be aware of surroundings, cooperate with police or military personnel, don’t resist police or military inspections of cars or personal belongings and allow time for transit on roads in St. James.

The United Kingdom also issued a travel advisory.  Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness added security forces are still expected to be humane to all citizens

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