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Aug 28, 2017

Guat Foreign Minister is Fired; He Refused Order to Expel Anti-Corruption Official

Carlos Raul Morales

Across the western border, Guatemala has been thrown into a political crisis following an attempt by President Jimmy Morales to expel United Nations anti-corruption commissioner Ivan Velasquez.  It succeeds an announcement on Friday that Velasquez and Chief Prosecutor Thelma Aldana would seek the removal of the president’s immunity so he could be investigated for campaign finance violations in 2015.  On Sunday, Morales announced that he was getting rid of Velasquez, but the order to have him expelled was blocked by Guatemala’s highest court.  Francisco de Mata, president of the Constitutional Court, said that it had issued a temporary injunction preventing a directive to have the head of the UN International Committee Against Impunity in Guatemala removed.  Amid widespread disapproval from the international community, President Morales terminated foreign minister Carlos Raul Morales for refusing to carry out the expulsion order.  It’s perhaps the most shocking piece of news coming out of Guatemala, particularly since the chief diplomat has been at the forefront of the movement to take that country’s territorial claim on Belize to the International Court of Justice.  Earlier today, we caught up with Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington who has been quite cozy with his Guatemalan counterpart.  Here is his reaction to Morales’ abrupt firing.

 

Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington

Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs

“The rumor was for some time now that the foreign minister would have been replaced.  In earlier months, we thought that he was actually going to the OAS.  That was a first indication but that did not happen.  I don’t have an explanation why he has been let go from the foreign ministry at this particular time, but there was always a suggestion that he would have been leaving that ministry.”

 

Reporter

“But the report is that he was instructed by the president to expel the head of CICIG, the Colombian, Ivan Velasquez, and when he refused to expel him he was then summarily dismissed.”

 

Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington

“Well you know, it is always dangerous not to obey the instructions of your boss, and if he did not obey the instructions of his boss I imagine then that the boss would have taken that kind of…  That is the danger when you’re a minister, you see, you’re very expendable.  You can’t afford to get your prime minister or president upset.”

 

Reporter

“Now the deeper issue is that outsiders are saying that Guatemala risks lurching into chaos because the president has made this very bold move against the head of this UN agency, CICIG, and that, well now it’s blocked by the constitutional court but they’re right on the edge.  Are you apprised of these developments and how do you see them?”

 

Wilfred ‘Sedi’ Elrington

“I was apprised of the developments yes, and our ambassador in Guatemala is very much on the ground and he communicated to our C.E.O. as early as yesterday and I was informed about the developments and the Prime Minister was in fact informed of it.”

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2 Responses for “Guat Foreign Minister is Fired; He Refused Order to Expel Anti-Corruption Official”

  1. carlos says:

    Belize should learn from Guatemala that nobody is above the law of the country. Former president Perez Molina and his vice is still in jail. Here in Belize the Leader approves the corruption of the of ministers and government officials. Probably we should ask the united nations to send a commissioner to Belize. We can’t even start activating the UNCAC Belize signed last year.

  2. truth says:

    Really Sedi, like seriously! No wonder our country is in this F****** Mess.. you guys have air for brains..

    Sad

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