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Jul 20, 2012

OAS observing investigation into death of illegal logger

The Guatemalan Foreign Ministry posted an official release on its website. It condemns the killing of Martinez and puts the incident in the area of Machaquila near El Carrizal, Peten, three kilometers east of adjacency zone. In a most unusual statement, Guatemala also questions the effectiveness of the office of the O.A.S. in the Adjacency Zone in preventing the B.D.F. from “attacking and killing” Guatemalan nationals.  That country’s authorities also say they will do everything in their power to punish those responsible for the incident. The killing of Martinez will be discussed at a meeting on July thirtieth in Washington between Belize, Guatemala and the O.A.S. The Guatemalan newspaper, Prensa Libre, says the Deputy Foreign Minister Carlos Raul Morales, has also questioned the Belizean authorities’ respect for the lives and human rights of Guatemalan citizens.  So while the O.A.S. has been invited as a nonparticipating witness, Rosado says the incident did not occur within the Adjacency Zone, therefore the O.A.S. cannot arbitrate the matter.

 

Alexis Rosado, C.E.O., Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Alexis Rosado

“We don’t deal with the Guatemalan press or any other body outside governments but we deal with every case according to the rules and procedures that are clearly set out when there is an incident, when there is any injury, when there is a loss of life and when civilians are involved the police are called in.  Police do their investigation, if there is any finding of any wrongdoing the D.P.P.’s office would have to take action.  In this case the facts are yet to be established and really it’s a matter for the police and D.P.P. if necessary.  I’m sure the B.D.F. have their own rules of procedures.  They have their own standing orders, it is according to the B.D.F.  They will decide whether their standing orders were properly followed.  Where we stand from a foreign affairs point of view, when a foreign national is involved we have to engage with the country where they come from and we have to be sure that all the proper protocols are followed.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“What role, if any, would the Organization of American States play in terms of brokering this particular situation seeing as though it may not have occurred within the Adjacency Zone area?  Do they have jurisdiction in this matter?”

 

Alexis Rosado

“Well they don’t but [that’s] because it occurred outside of the Adjacency Zone.  But in any case, for the purposes of full transparency, we have invited them to observe the whole process.  We have invited, for example, the Embassy of Guatemala to be present when the autopsy of the deceased takes place.”

 

Jose Miguel Insulza

While the Guatemalan Vice minister is question the efficiency of the O.A.S., Secretary General Miguel Insulza, has weighed in on the incident. Insulza expresses regret at the death of the Guatemalan national in the shootout with the B.D.F.  Insulza says in a statement, “The death of a person in a shootout is always reprehensible and I hope that the circumstances in which this occurred are cleared up promptly.” According to Insulza when he became apprised of the incident, he was in contact with the foreign ministers of both countries and their ambassadors accredited to the O.A.S., to gather more information about what happened and ask for a broad investigation. He also got a commitment from Belize to conduct a diligent and immediate investigation and to provide access to the government of Guatemala.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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8 Responses for “OAS observing investigation into death of illegal logger”

  1. Rod says:

    All these things happening in the country and where is he supposed leader of the country this is why he needs to resign well when Guatemala come take over Belize guess who won’t be here. His last name starts with a bbbbbbbbbbbbbbb

  2. Lucas says:

    The Guatemalan Govt. must understand that the people of Belize are tired of them having our forests raided, our flora and fauna dessiminated and our precious minerals stolen. We the Belizean people have demanded that our G.O.B. through our BDF protect our sovereign and territorial integrity. In doing so, they have our full and unquestionable support. Each and every BDF who goes on patrol along our border goes with the knowledge and full assurance that the country of Belize and the people of Belize are behind them and that we have their back covered.

  3. islander says:

    In times like this we have to show our troops that we support them 120%.

    God knows that they risk their lives on a daily basis in those jungles, making a small amount of money, living in horrible conditions and being fired upon by poachers.

    The right to self defense is a God given right and our soldiers like any other Belizean have the right to return fire when fired upon.

  4. Uptight says:

    Hi Rod, don’t even go there saying ” when Guatemala take over Belize”, because it is not going to happen.
    Cheers Lucas, you said it well, myself almost killed one of them. I must educate my Belizeans as a former soldier and experience such event on the ground that these people who the BDF are dealing with are very “dangerous” they usually fire first. The BDF will not fire until fired upon, so it could have been a soldier who got killed as well.
    In the Jungle my friends it is kill or be killed. Pick your poison!!!!

  5. Tim says:

    Why doesn’t the guatemalan government call a conference to see what they can do to keep their poachers from raiding our forests! If they would take care of their people they wouldn’t be coming over here to try to earn a living!! You don’t see belizeans going over there and stealing! I have 120% faith and support for our troops!

  6. Vuk says:

    It’s my personal opinion that this whole process with the OAS in regard to the Belize-Guatemala border has been a big waste of time and has done nothing more other than to imperil the ability of the authorities to protect Belize’s national integrity. Seeing that this is the case, I believe the time has come to reverse this process to the “status quo ante”, or to the state of affairs that existed between Belize and Guatemala before it started.

  7. july says:

    I must say that our troops did what they needed to do to protect their lives and our boarder. These Guatemalans come to Belize to Destroy what we have take care off. they exploit our forest for timber, minerals and game meat on a regular basis. I bet that they cannot go into the properties of the big generals in Guatemala to cut down their timber because they get killed. OAS is more fanfare than anything. If they were serious about this they would get a independent person to patrol with both country military to document what really happens.. i must side with our soliders since the guatemalans army always have an excuse for not making the linkup bi-national patrols…

  8. ang says:

    Guatemala needs to control their side we control our side period

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