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Jun 4, 2013

Belize absent from CARICOM/SICA meeting in Antigua, Guatemala

The forty-third General Assembly of the Organization of American States takes place this evening in Antigua, Guatemala.  Our team is on the ground and we will have full coverage on Open Your Eyes as well as in our daily newscasts this week. Belize’s participation in the event is hinged on whether or not Guatemala would attempt to mock our country’s sovereignty by displaying maps that annex Belize to that country. So far the maps or any other provocative material have not been seen. There are numerous side events taking place and there was a private sector meeting of Central American and Caribbean business leaders that had no participation from Belize. The O.A.S. describes it as a private meeting between the Assistant Secretary General of the O.A.S., Albert Ramdin, the Minister of Economy of Guatemala, Sergio de la Torre, and government officials from both regions. The Ministers of Trade and Economy and other senior trade officials from Guatemala, Jamaica, Bahamas, Panama, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic and Haiti addressed the private meeting.  But the fact that our representatives were not at the meeting was the focus of the Belize media in Antigua. 


Voice of: Fred Martinez, Belize Ambassador to Guatemala (Courtesy Krem News)

“It is not within the context of it. There was, prior to the general assembly, there are numerous other meetings like encounters of the private sector, etc. And there was a private sector forum organized within the margins of the general assembly; Central America, CARICOM. We were not advised about any Belizean delegation arriving or not arriving so I don’t know. But I do know some CARICOM countries, specifically Trinidad and Jamaica sent in some of their businessmen to dialogue with Central Americans. But it was just a forum outside the general assembly; not organized by the O.A.S.”


Fred Martinez


“Is that an affront to our supposed pride of place as the bridge between Central America and the Caribbean?”



“Because you knew of it before?”


Voice of: Fred Martinez

“No we just knew about it when it happened. None of our embassies were informed.”



“Is the fact of you not being informed an indication that we are being surpassed for what has traditionally been our recognized role?”


Voice of: Fred Martinez

“Jules, I can’t tell you that we were not invited. That is what I am telling you. This is more key. Maybe the invitation was sent to the private sector organizations in Belize and they did not send anybody or to BELTRAIDE. We do know that there was a representation of Belize the previous day at the Guatemala investment summit from BELTRAIDE. But whether they stayed on for the SICA countries/CARICOM dialogue, I don’t know. We found out about it from the news that something was occurring. I checked with Central American embassies in Guatemala and none of them knew that their private sector organizations had been invited. So it would be terrible for me to say we were dissed or we were taken out. I don’t know who organized it or if they sent an invitation to whom it was sent in Belize. I really don’t know.”

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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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3 Responses for “Belize absent from CARICOM/SICA meeting in Antigua, Guatemala”

  1. Jackie says:

    maybe they sent it to KHMH board of directors and they are just finding about it from the media right now?

  2. impartial says:

    what recognized role? Belize may be the “diplomatic bridge” if that, but business is business and Belize has nothing to offer either to SICA or CARICOM

  3. Storm says:

    Is anyone surprised that GOB has no idea what is going on outside of the scams it runs within the Jewel?

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