The Prime Minister of Jamaica says that the British Royals island nation wants to be independent

Kingston, March 23 (Reuters) – Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holmes told Britain’s Prince William and his wife Kate on Wednesday that he wanted his country to be “independent” and resolve “unresolved” issues. For slavery.

The royal couple arrived in Jamaica on Tuesday as part of a week-long tour of the former British Caribbean colonies, but faced public questions about the legacy of the British Empire.

In a speech Wednesday, Prince William did not address calls to remove his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, from the presidency.

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Following the removal of the Queen as Sovereign Head of State about four months ago and the transformation of Barbados into a Republic, the royal couple’s journey began to explore Jamaica.

During filming with William and Kate, Holnes said, “There are unresolved issues here.

“But it seems like you see Jamaica as a very proud country … we are moving forward. We intend to fulfill our true ambition of being more independent, fully developed and prosperous.”

Dozens of people gathered outside the British High Commission in Kingston on Tuesday, singing traditional Rastafarian songs and holding banners with the slogan “Say You Sorry” – urging Britain to apologize. L2N2VP2CB

In a speech at the Governor-General’s residence attended by Holnes and other dignitaries, William stopped short of apologizing for slavery, although he acknowledged that his father’s declaration that “the terrible atrocities of slavery tarnish our history forever” had been substantiated.

William, second in line to the British throne, expressed his “deep regret” for the establishment of slavery, which he said should never have been.

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Jamaican officials have previously said the government is examining the process of reforming the constitution to become a republic. Experts say the process could take years and require a referendum.

The Jamaican government has said it will seek compensation from Britain for forcing 600,000 Africans to work on sugarcane and banana plantations, which created a fortune for British slaveholders last year.

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Report by Kate Chappell in Kingston and Brian Ellsworth in Miami; Editing by Bill Berkrod and Muralikumar Anandaraman

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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