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Jun 3, 2011

BATSUB donates all-terrain vehicles to B.D.F.

Earlier this year we told you that the British Forces were reducing their number of troops in Belize and other countries due to cut backs in the British Ministry of Defense. There are still pressing concerns on the effect on the Caribbean with respect to troops that assisted in deterring narco-trafficking and other transnational crimes. To lessen the effects of the removal of its helicopters in Belize, the UK Ministry of Defense donated six all-terrain vehicles to the Belize Defense Force. The British High Commissioner also commented on the removal of the UK presence, one which he says is only temporary.

Lt. Col Robert Lindsay, Commander BATSUB

Robert Lindsay

“Well this donation is from the British Ministry of Defence and it’s in large part because of the reduction the helicopters, because of the reduction in helicopters. These helicopters will be, sorry these vehicles will be used by the by the BDF as they see fit but in essence they’re already there to allow them to get to the more inaccessible areas of Belize where currently our helicopters are able to assist them.”

Patrick Ashworth

Patrick Ashworth, British High Commissioner

“The first thing is to say that it is a temporary downsizing. When we had the Assistant Chief of Defense, he described it as turning down the volume. So it’s a temporary turning down in the volume of our training and as you know it’s a tough economic times for everybody we also went through a strategic defense review in the UK and it was then agreed that we’d put all our efforts into Afghanistan,  and so everything we do got Afghanistan on mind. So at the moment all our training is going towards that so once that’s over, or once we downsize our presence in Afghanistan we hope once again that BATSUB will be able to pick up size but we still have that commitment to Belize. We’re still leaving some UK soldiers here and there will still be  a sizeable contingent of Belize staff to keep this place running until we need to upscale it again.”

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