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Dec 9, 2008

F.M. Elrington addresses “hysteria” against compromis…

Story PictureFresh off a plane from Washington D.C., this evening Minister of Foreign Affairs, Wilfred Elrington addressed the nation on the issue of the compromis. Elrington says the briefing is part of the government’s commitment to keep the public informed and educated on the Belize/Guatemala process. During the lengthy conference that concluded at six this evening, the minister took time out to go through article by article of the special agreement to dispel some of the quote “hysteria” over the document. For those skeptics, he stressed that the power of going to the International Court of Justice to settle the Guatemalan claim rests in the hands of citizens.

Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs
“There were some very baleful comments on the radio which I was told continued this morning which suggested that the sky would have fallen in once we signed this document. The truth is that what transpired yesterday was just a tiny but historic step more for the symbolism than in fact for the practical aspect of what transpired. This agreement will not be sent to the I.C.J. The people at the I.C.J. will not see this agreement and the I.C.J. may never see this agreement if the Belizean people say they don’t want to go to the I.C.J. If when we have the referendum, the decision is no, the people of at the I.C.J. will never see it and we will simply put this one in the scrap heap and move on with a view to resolving this dispute. So what is really happening is the exercise of democratisation in its most extreme form. I don’t know of any other country which has in fact put into the hands of these people, the responsibility to determine the future of the country.”

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