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Sep 14, 2016

Illegal Logging in Sarstoon Temash National Park Still an Issue

While the BTV is not too worried about security issues at the border point, participants are not expected to cross over into Guatemalan territory.  As far as fishing and illegal extraction of hardwood, there are serious concerns that residents on the Guatemalan side of the Sarstoon River continue to enter the Sarstoon Temash National Park illegally to conduct unlawful logging activities.

 

Wil Maheia, Founder, BTV

Wil Maheia

“At the moment, I mean we understand that the prime minister has said that there’s untrammeled access right now and we don’t expect to be stopped by any Guatemalans.  And after all, we are inside Belize’s territory, we have no intention to venture into Guatemala or any Guatemalan waters.  We will stay within the boundaries of Belize, within 8867.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“What is the overall climate within the Sarstoon area as of late?  Has there been any occurrences, continued occurrences of illegal fishing?  Has there been the pillaging of resources on our end?  What is the overall situation down south?”

 

Wil Maheia

“When it comes to fishing, again I want to take this opportunity to applaud the BDF and the coast guard who are enforcing the fisheries regulation.  I have been there no less than six times within the last month and I haven’t seen any illegal fishing taking place in that area, so kudos to the military forces for ensuring that that is not happening.  But what I can tell you is happening is continuous pillaging in the Sarstoon Temash National Park, so you go up the Sarstoon River and the Guatemalans are coming across, just like they do in the Chiquibul the Guatemalans are coming across into the Sarstoon Temash National Park right now and they are extracting our hardwoods.”

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