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May 4, 2016

From Sarstoon Sovereignty to Sarstoon Protocols

On Tuesday, we brought you the highlights of the Prime Minister’s press conference on the very volatile state of events between Belize and Guatemala. But there was much more of interest coming out of that short briefing during which the PM fielded questions – including this pointed query. How did we get from the point of total sovereignty over our portion of the Sarstoon, to the point where we are hopeful that Guatemala will agree to protocols governing that river which we both share, or at least which we both once shared? The Prime Minister responded in this manner.


Dean Barrow

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“There is no point in trying to bury our heads in the sand. We insist on our ownership of our share of the Sarstoon. It is a position that is well accepted by the international community, but the fact is that the Guatemalans also declare that they are sovereign over the entire Sarstoon. So there is a dispute. There is a dispute generally, more generally in terms of borders and the demarcation existing between the two territories, but then the Sarstoon is a particular flashpoint and so we won’t get very far if we merely say we know that we own our portion of the Sarstoon, and the Guatemalans will be prevented by us from any encroachment into what is our sovereign share of the river. That’s clearly going to inevitably lead to military exchanges, military confrontations and for all sorts of reasons including of course the difference, the disparity in resources and military might, we will try our best to avoid. That is why there is a need for protocols to govern the Sarstoon.”

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 “From Sarstoon Sovereignty to Sarstoon Protocols”

  1. Libertarian View says:

    I predicted this exact response from PM Barrow in an earlier reply concerning the Sarstoon debacle..
    So the big dog on the block (Guatemala) is going to make the little dog (Belize) go hide in the corner and take what belongs to us one piece at a time. This is typical Obama policy on any conflict. The USA now controls out foreign policy. Wake up Belizeans!!! We have a weak leader who should be knocking on Britain’s door and reminding them we are one of their commonwealth nations. This is an incursion like the Falklands. If Barrow will not stand up to the Guatemalans, let the British take a place next to our BDF They have an Air Force, Army, Marines and Navy that is world class.

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