PM Modi condemns attack on Vincent and Grenadines counterpart
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday condemned an attack on his St Vincent and the Grenadines counterpart Ralph Gonsalves and wished him quick recovery and good health.
PM Modi said in a tweet: “I condemn the ghastly attack on Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves of St Vincent and the Grenadines. Excellency, I wish you quick recovery and good health. We will miss your presence at the UNSC Open Debate on Maritime Security today.”
Gonsalves, 74, was struck on the head by an object during an anti-vaccine rally on Thursday and was flown to Barbados for medical treatment. He said on Friday he was recovering.
The premier of the Caribbean country was attacked as he walked through a group of about 200 protesters to get into parliament.
“By the grace of God almighty, I’m doing well and on the mend,” he wrote on social media. He said there was no sign of neurological damage, though his concussion would require weeks of monitoring.
Gonsalves was hit by a projectile just above his temple, his office said in a statement. Video footage following the attack showed a dazed Gonsalves, his white shirt turning red as blood streaked down. Security guards rushed him from the scene and he was later flown to Barbados for medical care.
The protest was organised by unions representing nurses, police and other workers who fear Covid-19 vaccinations could be mandated for some employees by the government, according to reports and videos on social media.
Gonsalves has said proposed changes to his country’s public health law wouldn’t include penalties for those who refuse Covid-19 shots. He also said there was no justification for the attack. “We can have our disagreements, but to cross the line into violence is unacceptable in a democratic society,” he said. St Vincent and the Grenadines, a chain of 32 islands in the southern Caribbean, is home to more than 110,000 people.