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Mar 26, 2013

Government rejects Guatemala’s 2 referendum proposals

On Monday, the Opposition rejected two Guatemalan proposals and tonight there is official word from Belmopan that Cabinet has looked at the proposals and is also discarding them in their entirety. A release from the Belize Press Office this afternoon made that position clear, while reiterating the point that Belize has done everything to stick to the terms and conditions of the Special Agreement signed between both countries on December eighth, 2008. The hidden subtext is that Guatemala hasn’t, and that opinion was also expressed by the Opposition which held a press conference to turn down those proposals. So with a united front rejecting the proposals, all that is left is to convey that message to the OAS who will then relay it to Guatemala. Today, News Five sat down with Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington, and freelance reporter Mike Rudon found out what’s next.


Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs

Wilfred Elrington

“The Cabinet rejected those proposals in their entirety, unanimously.


Mike Rudon

“So what does that mean? What happens next?”


Wilfred Elrington

“We will now communicate our rejection to the Secretary General of the OAS who will then communicate that to the Guatemalans and then we will wait to see what is the next move taken by the Guatemalans.”


Mike Rudon, Reporting

And that move by Guatemala after they are handed Belize’s rejection on an OAS platter is anybody’s guess.


Wilfred Elrington

“I really am not sure. To be very candid with you, I am not sure what they would do. That would be highly speculative and I can’t even think what they will do. I would hope that they would have a course and let us have the referendum as agreed to.”


But while any card can play in this diplomatic and political poker game, Elrington says Cabinet is not surprised at the high-level games being played.


Wilfred Elrington

“This is not the first time that the Guatemalans have taken this kind of position so it cannot be said that the government was taken by surprise by it. But we have got to be positive and hopeful that in fact we will be able to move forward to end the claim. The important thing is to get rid of the claim and be prepared to hold the course and to do all in our power to ensure that we get a just and good solution to the problem. And even if we have hiccups along the way, we are prepared to work with that.”


So what about the prospect of Belize hosting a one-man show on October sixth? Not going to happen, says Elrington. He says Cabinet didn’t even contemplate it, even though that suggestion had been thrown out in earlier interviews.


Wilfred Elrington

“My position has got to be the position of the government and I think it is allowed sometimes, but that is not a tenable position for the country; it is not considered that that would be a good position at all. We must hold to the agreement, be consistent with the agreement and we must be bound by the agreement.”


So with all that said, Belize has made its move, and now plays the waiting game while Guatemala considers its response. Mike Rudon for News Five.

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3 Responses for “Government rejects Guatemala’s 2 referendum proposals”

  1. lucas says:

    If there is supposed to be a referendum, it must be carried out as agreed by both parties. To want to change the rules in the middle of the game only reveals the truth: HIPOCRESY ON THE PART OF GUATEMALA. I stand beside Francis and Dean’s decision. It is not only the right one, but moral and ethics demanded it. NOW, THE COUNTRY MUST STAND SHOULDER TO SHOULDER. WE MUST CLOSE RANKS AND UNITED TELL THE GUATE-BADS: STICK IT. Let it be clear, the Belizean people are not running from their international obligation, it is Guatemala. We Belizeans, like it or not, would had gone to the polls on the date agreed by both parties. Our Govt. should ensure the whole world knows that we are holding our end of the bargain, but it looks like Guatemala is not.

  2. Belizean Pride says:

    We aren’t going to ICJ cause we’re going to vote no to ICJ on the 6th of october 2013. Belize is Belize and has never been and will never be part of guatemala.

  3. Storm says:

    From an historical point of view, Guatemala has never ruled Belize. Our borders existed before Guatemala came into existence in 1821. They might as well claim sovereignty over Madrid itself as over Belize, because the factual basis would be the same.

    Logically, Guatemala’s current breach of the compromis should end their claim forever.

    1. Guatemala made the claim.
    2. Guatemala agreed to a process to have ICJ determine the claim.
    3. Guatemala has now reneged on its agreement to have its phony claim resolved.
    4. Guatemala has waived its claim, now and forever.

    That doesn’t mean that Guatemala’s lust to conquer us will die, but they have exposed themselves as a pack of liars, cheats, and frauds.

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