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Diplomatic row brewing after Jamaica refuses to accredit same-sex spouse of American diplomat

 
A diplomatic row has been simmering between Washington and Kingston over Jamaica's refusal to accredit the spouse of an American diplomat.
 
The dispute is threatening to sour diplomatic relations between the two traditional allies.
 
Earlier this year the United States government wrote to the Jamaican government seeking its approval for the married partner of a diplomat about to be posted to Jamaica and who is in a same-sex relationship to be given diplomatic immunity and all the privileges of a diplomat.
 
It's believed the Jamaican government did not respond to the request in a timely manner.
 
When the US sent another diplomatic note demanding a response, the Jamaican government responded rejecting the request.    
 
A senior government source told Radio Jamaica News that an approval of the request would mean Jamaica recognises same-sex marriages, which is illegal in this country.
 
Our sources tell us the US then responded rejecting a request from the Jamaican government to extend the stay of three diplomats in Jamaica's embassy and consulates in the United States.
 
The US served notice that the trio must leave immediately after their five-year diplomatic visa expires.
 
This is in contrast to what now obtains, where extensions to diplomatic visas for Jamaican diplomats beyond the five-year period are routine.
 
Among those affected are Jamaica's ambassador to the US, Audrey Marks, and Consul General Oliver Mair, based in Miami, who the Americans say must leave and return to Jamaica this year.
 
It's not known what other diplomatic measures, if any, the US government might take against Jamaica in light of the government's refusal to grant immunity to the spouse of one of its diplomats.


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