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Apr 21, 2016

BTV Head Wil Maheia Not Satisfied With Enforcement of Laws at Sarstoon

Wil Maheia

Head of the Territorial Volunteers Wil Maheia attended the inauguration of the Forward Operating Base on Wednesday. He’s been a longtime advocate for a military presence in the Sarstoon, and his Belize Territorial Volunteers have led expeditions to the area since 2015.  He told us that the base is good, but he’s not convinced yet that the will and the ability to enforce the territorial integrity of Belize are up to mark.


Wil Maheia, Head, Belize Territorial Volunteers

“We have to applaud the government for putting up the base. I mean it is strategically located and I think it is a really good base, but at the same time we cannot just have a base out here without enforcing the regulations. Clearly when coming in here we still saw a lot of signs of gillnets taking place and I would hope that now the enforcement agencies will do their job. I’m glad to see the Fisheries Department out here today; it is the first time I’ve seen them in the area and I hope that they continue to come here and enforce the fishing laws. What we see right here at the Sarstoon Island, Guatemalan aggression….I mean I can’t understand why is it that we will continue to allow armed Guatemalan military people to be inside Belize’s territory fully armed. I mean it is open right there for everyone to see; they are on the north side of the Sarstoon Island, they are very close to the Sarstoon Island and the minister has just said in his opening remarks that the Sarstoon Island clearly belongs to Belize and clearly is part of Belize. In that aspect, they kinda like ruined what could have been a great day. The Guatemalans continue to agitate. I mean they talk about the BTV agitating the Guatemalans; I think the proof is in the pudding right now. People will see for themselves that it is not the territorial volunteers that are aggravating the Guatemalans, but the Guatemalans are just being bully.”


Mike Rudon

“Now the minister sent a clear message in his address saying you know what, thank you all for doing it, thank you all for going out there, thank you all for asserting sovereignty, you all were brave…all of that. But you can leave it to us now. Your response to that?”


Wil Maheia

“Well I don’t think that we can leave it to them right now. We have to be vigilant; we have to continue to stay on Belize’s border because as it is right now, he’s saying leave it to them or leave it to the military but clearly we have Guatemalan armed forces personnel within a few feet of this newly built forward operating base, clearly in violation of Belize’s laws, international laws. And I hope that something is being done that we have to put Guatemala in check, we have to hold them in check because if they can come here and bully us like that, then their fishermen will also think that they have the right to do whatever they want. The illegal logging must stop and the illegal fishing must stop.”


Wil Maheia is planning another trip to the Sarstoon next week, but given the build-up of Guatemalan troops in the area, it is not known if there will be a change of plans. 

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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1 Response for “BTV Head Wil Maheia Not Satisfied With Enforcement of Laws at Sarstoon”

  1. CEO says:

    Keep the pressure up Wil and let them keep spending their financial resources on stupidity.

    They are vehement and defiant in their encroachment onto Belizean soil and will also speak out against us defending our border. I guess we should just let them do whatever the heck they want to and say a word just as some of our leaders expect us to do.

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