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St Kitts: No row with Canada

SHERRYLYN CLARKE, [email protected]

St Kitts: No row with Canada

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BASSETERRE, St Kitts (CMC) – The St Kitts-Nevis government has dismissed opposition claims of a diplomatic row with Canada over the sale of its passports to foreign investors.
“The Government states unreservedly and unequivocally that there has been no diplomatic row or uproar involving St Kitts and Nevis and Canada over the issuance of diplomatic passports,” according to a statement issued from the Office of the Prime Minister.
Earlier this week, Opposition Leader Mark Brantley called on the government to provide answers as to how an Iranian national was made a special envoy for St Kitts and Nevis to Turkey and Azerbaijan. He claimed US $1 million was paid for the passport, demanded to know who had received the money and called for the revocation of diplomatic status.
“Minister Nisbett failed and/or refused to advise the citizenry of this country why this Iranian national who Minister Nisbett states was an envoy to Azerbaijan or Turkey could enter Canada and indicate to Canadian authorities that he had meetings with the Canadian Prime Minister for and on behalf of the people of St Kitts and Nevis.  
“What business did this Iranian national have in Canada and on whose behalf?  Canada as we know is thousands of miles away from Turkey and Azerbaijan,” Brantley said in a radio broadcast, calling also for a full investigation into the matter.
In the Parliament on Tuesday, Foreign Affairs Minister Patrice Nisbett revealed that the government in January had approved the appointment of Iranian Alizeera Moghadam as a special envoy, after he had acquired citizenship under the Citizenship Investment Programme (CIP).
The statement from the Prime Minister’s Office described the allegations made by the opposition as erroneous and misleading and intended to bring the CIP into disrepute.
It said that only persons duly appointed as diplomats of the government of St. Kitts and Nevis were authorized to carry diplomatic passports of St. Kitts and Nevis.