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Aug 10, 2015

P.M. Barrow – “Guatemalan Foreign Minister Misspoke on Confidence Building Measures”

Carlos Raul Morales

The issue of constructing a forward operating base near Sarstoon Island remains a controversial subject.  The matter has seemingly been exacerbated following recent comments made by Guatemalan Foreign Minister Carlos Raul Morales during a press brief at the end of last month.  Morales went on record to say that in the Confidence Building Measures, Belize and Guatemala agreed not to “increase military bases in the vicinity of both countries.”  Of course, that comment did not sit well with erstwhile P.U.P. foreign ministers Said Musa, Eamon Courtenay, Godfrey Smith and Lisa Shoman.  They promptly issued a joint statement clarifying that blunder.  P.M. Barrow also concedes that Morales did indeed make a mistake when commenting on the matter.

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“I completely accept that he misspoke and I think he does too.  The records are there and it is a fact that there is not that kind of language.  I also understood him to say though that he accepts as well that what we mean to do with the forward operating base is not to be viewed by them as any kind of a threat.  This is for purposes of our internal security arrangements and indeed we invite them to coordinate with us so that the illegal fishing and other illegal activities that clearly take place in the area might be more effectively interdicted.  Look, the Americans in particular, who have this overriding interest in Central America and security and especially in the trafficking in drugs are aboard, are very much aware of what we wish to do and supportive and I believe that at the military level there is understanding on the part of the Guatemalan officials.  Now at the political level it seems to me that there is also agreement so we will proceed.”

 

Dean Barrow

Reporter

“Sir, as the Minister of Finance can you give us a timeline as to when that base will be built?”

 

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“No.  I haven’t yet been approached for the funds and I believe that especially because, as I understand it, there is now this willingness on the part of the Guatemalans to collaborate with Belize in the same way as on land there are linkups, joint patrols, that sort of thing because there is now that willingness which has been formally expressed, I think it might take a little while longer for them to workout, the two countries.  The logistics of the exercises that will take place in the area so I can’t really give a timeline.”

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1 Response for “P.M. Barrow – “Guatemalan Foreign Minister Misspoke on Confidence Building Measures””

  1. CEO says:

    I would like to see us telling Guatemala where on their soil they can build what and when!

    I few more Belizeans need to grow a new pair and tell these guys where to get off.

    The world knows that we are not picking on them cause we have no might. They are bullying us and those of influence are cowering down.

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