British Virgin Islands: The British Virgin Islands is a British overseas territory in the Caribbean. They are part of a volcanic archipelago. It’s known for its reef-lined beaches and as a sailing destination, and it’s made up of four main islands and a slew of smaller ones.
The capital, Road Town, is located on the largest island, Tortola, which is also home to the rainforest-filled Sage Mountain National Park. The Baths are a labyrinth of seaside stones on Virgin Gorda Island.
Geography of the British Virgin Islands
The British Virgin Islands are made up of roughly 60 tropical Caribbean islands varying in size from the largest, Tortola, which is 20 kilometers (12 miles) long and 5 kilometers (3 miles) wide, to tiny uninhabited islets, covering a total area of around 150 square kilometers (58 square miles).
They’re in the Virgin Islands archipelago, around 95 kilometers (59 miles) from the Puerto Rican peninsula and a few miles east of the US Virgin Islands. Anguilla is located 150 kilometers (93 miles) east-southeast of Anguilla. To the east of the islands in the North Atlantic Ocean, and to the west is the Caribbean Sea.
The majority of the islands were formed by volcanic activity and have a hilly, rough topography. Mount Sage, at 521 meters, is the highest point on Tortola.
Anegada is a flat island made up of limestone and coral, which sets it apart from the rest of the group geologically. The Leeward Islands’ moist forests and the Leeward Islands xeric scrub terrestrial ecoregions are found on the British Virgin Islands.
British Virgin Islands Climate
The British Virgin Islands feature a tropical rainforest environment with trade breezes that keep it temperate. Temperatures are rather consistent throughout the year. Typical daily maxima in the capital, Road Town, are around 32 °C (89.6 °F) in the summer and 29 °C (84.2 °F) in the winter.
In the summer, daily minimums are approximately 26 °C (78.8 °F), whereas, in the winter, they are around 23 °C (73.4 °F). Rainfall is roughly 1,150 mm (45.3 in) per year on average, with higher amounts in the hills and smaller amounts near the shore.
The wettest months on average are September to November, and the driest months on average are February and March.
British Virgin Islands Politics
The territory is governed by a parliamentary system. The Queen has ultimate executive authority in the British Virgin Islands, which is exercised by the Governor of the British Virgin Islands on her behalf.
On the advice of the British Government, the Queen appoints the governor. The United Kingdom is still in charge of defense and most international affairs.
The most recent constitution (the Virgin Islands Constitution Order, 2007) was enacted in 2007 and went into effect when the Legislative Council was dissolved for the 2007 general election.
The Premier (pre-new constitution, the office formerly known as Chief Minister), who is elected in a general election alongside other members of the ruling administration as well as members of the opposition, is the head of government.
Elections are held every four years on average. The Premier nominates a cabinet, which the Governor appoints and chairs. The Queen (represented by the Governor) and a unicameral House of Assembly made up of 13 elected members plus the Speaker and Attorney General make up the Legislature.
John Rankin is the current Governor (since 29 January 2020). Andrew Fahie, the head of the ruling Virgin Islands Party, is the current Premier (since February 26, 2019).
The Premier of the British Virgin Islands Detained
Federal authorities said the premier of the British Virgin Islands and the director of the Caribbean territory’s ports were arrested in South Florida on drug smuggling allegations on Thursday.
According to a criminal complaint, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration officials detained Premier Andrew Alturo Fahie and Managing Director Oleanvine Maynard at Miami-Opa-Locka Executive Airport and accused them of conspiracy to import cocaine and conspiracy to launder money. According to the records, Maynard’s son, Kadeem Maynard, is facing the same alterations in the alleged plan.
Premier Andrew Alturo Fahie and BVI Ports Authority Managing Director Oleanvine Pickering Maynard were detained at Miami-Opa Locka Executive Airport. Maynard’s son, Kadeem Stephan Maynard, was also detained, according to the report.
Fahie and the Maynards are being jailed on allegations of conspiring to import 5 kilograms or more of cocaine and conspiring to launder money. CNN was unable to determine whether any of them have legal representation.
A confidential source with the US Drug Enforcement Administration met with “a group of self-proclaimed Lebanese Hezbollah operatives… who stated that they had business ties to South Florida and the Middle East” commencing on or about October 16, 2021.
The meetings allegedly took place on Tortola Island in the British Virgin Islands, according to the complaint.
During those discussions, the anonymous source requested that the organization assist in the use of Tortola as a temporary storage port for cocaine being shipped from Colombia by boat to the United States, according to the report. The narcotics proceeds would have been laundered as part of the source’s plan.
The British Virgin Islands are an overseas territory of the United Kingdom in the Caribbean, east of Puerto Rico. Along with the US Virgin Islands and the Spanish Virgin Islands, the islands form part of the Virgin Islands archipelago.
The organization agreed, to introduce the source to senior officials of the British Virgin Islands government who may provide protection in exchange for a fee. A member of the gang stated that he would approach Fahie’s security chief and arrange a meeting.
According to the affidavit, one of the members of the gang also claimed to “own” Oleanvine Maynard.
“Anyone complicit in smuggling hazardous drugs into the United States, regardless of their position, will be held accountable,” said DEA Administrator Anne Milgram in a statement.
“Today is just another example of the DEA’s determination to hold corrupt government officials accountable for utilizing their positions of authority to create a safe haven for drug traffickers and money launderers in exchange for financial and political advantage.“