Forgotten World (181): Turks and Caicos

It’s been a while since I’ve done one of my regular weeks of postings in my long-running series called Forgotten World – a look at parts of the world that hardly feature in our media or thoughts – so let’s return to the series. You can check the previous 180 entries here.

The Turks and Caicos islands lie 600 miles south-east of Florida in the Atlantic Ocean. The population is only 36,000 but the island, a popular playground for Hollywood stars and musicians, attracts 300,000 tourists a year.

In August 2009, the UK resumed day-to-day control of the islands amid ongoing allegations of widespread corruption in the British overseas territory. Local government in the islands have been suspended for up to two years while their affairs are put back in “good order”. The move went ahead after a legal challenge by former premier Michael Misick failed in the court of appeal in London.

He resigned in March 2009 but, along with other senior officials, continues to deny accusations of corruption highlighted by a parliamentary committee and commission of enquiry in 2008. Misick has been accused of building a multimillion-dollar fortune financed from questionable dealings that gave property developers access to crown-owned land.


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