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Dec 19, 2014

2 Agreements Didn’t Make it to the Table

Stuart Leslie

For context, Leslie told News Five that the agreements signed fulfilled a mandate that was established through a joint commission between Belize and Guatemala.  Initially, there was a total of fifteen agreements which were to have been signed but, according to Leslie; the plug was pulled at the eleventh hour, particularly where it concerned air traffic and hydrocarbon emission.


Stuart Leslie, Ambassador, Ministry of Foreign Affairs

“Another important thing that we said would come out of that was the establishment of a joint commission between Belize and Guatemala through their foreign ministries and that joint commission was given a very clear mandate of things that they were supposed to do.  It is those things that comprise the thirteen agreements and so from there we went on to 2008 when the Special Agreement or some people call it Compromis en Espanol.  The Special Agreement was signed for us to go to the people for a referendum on whether or not to submit the case to the ICJ.  June of 2013, Guatemala informed Belize that they were not prepared to go to the referendum in October and so then in January of this year the two foreign ministers met here, just up the street from here and decided let’s not just not do anything while we wait.  Let us go back to the 2005 agreement, establish the joint commission and complete the mandate that was set from 2005.  We can do that because it has no effect whatsoever on the claim, it has to do with how Belize and Guatemala will operate as two independent states.  That is how we came to doing these thirteen agreements.  The diplomats from Belize and Guatemala drafted the first draft of fifteen agreements and then for us in Belize we sent those fifteen agreements to the respective parties.  So, for example, in the case of, you mentioned the air transport agreement, we sent that to the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation and then the C.E.O. in the Ministry of Tourism then forwarded it to the appropriate departments and they scrutinized it, ransacked, looked through it line by line, sent it back to us with their proposed changes that were not sign.”


Copies of the agreement were finally circulated today to the media.

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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