Caribbean nations to demand trillions in reparations from European colonizers
Georgetown, Guyana - A bloc of Caribbean nations will demand formal apologies and $33 trillion in reparations from former European colonial powers for their role in the Transatlantic Slave Trade.
The Caribbean Community (CARICOM), a political and economic union of 15 member states, is urging the UK, France, Spain, and Denmark to take meaningful steps to acknowledge and provide redress for their crimes of enslavement.
According to The Times, an American consulting firm helped CARICOM calculate some of what is owed by each of the former colonizing nations. Ultimately, they determined the UK should pay at least $19.6 trillion, France $6.5 trillion, and Spain $6.3 trillion.
Dr. Verene Shepherd, vice chair of the CARICOM Reparations Commission, pointed out that it is impossible to quantify the full damage wrought through enslavement and colonialism, but that the numbers serve as a starting point for negotiations.
"The crime is huge. The responsibility for what happened is huge," she said.
CARICOM has developed a 10-point plan for reparatory justice encompassing formal apologies, cultural preservation, investments in public health and education, repatriation programs, debt cancellation, and more.
The push for reparations is also gaining steam in the US, where experts have calculated that at least $14 trillion will be required to close the Black-white racial wealth gap.
Cover photo: RICARDO MAKYN / AFP