Saint Kitts and Nevis Government and Politics
According to AllCityCodes.com, Saint Kitts and Nevis is a constitutional-democratic federal state after the Constitution of 1983. The British Queen is the titular head of state; she is represented by a Governor-General and a Deputy Governor-General at Nevis. Legislative authority has been added to a national assembly of 14 members, three nominees and 11 elected in the general election from single constituencies, eight from St. Kitts and three from Nevis. Nevis has its own five-member local assembly. Nevis’ assembly may, on certain terms, decide to leave the federation, which is the case.
The country is divided into 14 parishes. Also see AbbreviationFinder for abbreviation of KN and its meanings of St. Kitts and Nevis.
The supreme court is the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court, which includes a court of appeal and a court of law, based on St. Lucia. One of the nine judges in the Superior Court is in charge of St. Kitts and Nevis and presides over the court of summary jurisdiction. There are also magistrate dishes that judge in minor cases.
Saint Kitts and Nevis’ defense
Saint Kitt and Nevis have volunteer military service. A department of volunteers and a special unit within the police was established in 1981 for defense purposes. The country is part of the regional security system agreed by the independent states of the area in 1982. In 1997, Parliament approved plans to establish a permanent army.
History and Politics
The first islanders
The first people to settle on St. Kitts and Nevis came around 3000 BC. On the islands. They were hunters and gatherers, but later left the islands again. Around 400 BC Then the saladoids settled here. They came from the Orinoco Delta in what is now Venezuela. They were then ousted around 800 AD by the Igneri, an Arawak people.
But they too were displaced again when the Caribs arrived on the islands around 1300. These island caribs are also called Kalinago. Unlike the Caribs, who still live on the north coast of South America today, the Kalinago spoke an Arawak language. Today’s St. Kitts called these island Caribs Liamuiga, which means fertile island. To Nevis they said Oualie: Land of beautiful water.
In 1493 Christopher Columbus discovered the islands on his second voyage. He landed on Nevis like on many other islands and took possession of the islands for the Spanish crown. He baptized Nevis Santa María (“Holy Mary”, that is the name of one of his ships). It later became Nuestra Senõra de las Nieves. That means: Our mistress of the snow. Probably this is referring to the top of Nevis Peak, which is often shrouded in mist and looks like snow. Columbus baptized St. Kitts Sant Jago, which somehow turned into San Cristobal on maps, in English: St. Christopher. The islands were initially not colonized by Europeans.
Settlers from France and Great Britain, conquered by Spain
It was not until 1623 that the first permanent settlement was founded on St. Kitts by the British Sir Thomas Warner. The island was now called St. Christopher. It was the first British colony in the Caribbean. In 1625 the Frenchman Pierre Belain d’Esnambuc came to St. Kitts and Thomas Warner had him found two settlements, one of which would later become the capital of Basseterre. When the Caribs wanted to defend themselves against the capture of their island in 1626, the settlers set up a massacre and killed almost the entire indigenous population.
In 1629 the Spaniards conquered the island under the admiral Fadrique Álvarez de Toledo y Mendoza. The Battle of St. Kitts was part of the Anglo-Spanish War (1625-1630). The Spaniards expelled the English and French settlers on St. Kitts. But not for long: they returned as early as 1631. The settlers first grew tobacco and later sugar cane. Especially St. Kitts became a wealthy colony. In the following decades the islands remained a bone of contention between Great Britain and France. Slaves were brought in from West Africa to work on the plantations.
There have been several attempts by France to take the islands and successful occupations. In 1783, Great Britain finally prevailed and incorporated the islands into their colonies. In 1882 St. Christopher (St. Kitts), Nevis and, the third island, Anguilla were merged to form a common overseas territory.
In 1958 there was an attempt to make an independent state out of twelve British provinces, the island group St. Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla also belonged to this “West Indian Federation “. But this union only lasted until 1962, when the islands became a British colony again.
Autonomy, independence and separation of Anguilla
In 1967 the three islands received their autonomy. That is, they still belonged to the UK but were self-governing. Anguilla did not go far enough and left the federation in the same year, but this was initially not recognized. In 1971 Anguilla finally became an independent British overseas territory.
St. Kitts and Nevis finally became independent together in 1983 and formed a new state. Timothy Harris has been Prime Minister since 2015. St. Kitts and Nevis is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations and recognizes the British Queen as head of state of the country, she is represented by a Governor General.
Nevis has been striving to become independent since the 1990s. A referendum in 1998 failed, however, as a two-thirds majority was not achieved. But the efforts continue.