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Apr 9, 2019

Group of Friends Keeping a Close Eye on I.C.J. Events

As part of the Confidence Building Measures to keep the peace along the adjacency zone, the Group of Friends of Belize and Guatemala has been providing funding. These countries form part of the O.A.S. and others are observers.  On Monday, Prime Minister Dean Barrow was asked was has been the reaction of the international community including members of the Group of Friends.

 

Dean Barrow

Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“Clearly there are mixed reactions. There are some who decry what they see as the foolish games being played but what I found sobering was what one of the observers from the Commonwealth group said to me. He said, listen we are in fact regretting what has happened. We are concerned about the state of limbo but if, we spoke on Friday, the referendum has to be postponed don’t fear that that will cause us not to come back when you do have the referendum. When you talk about money, that O.A.S. office for example at the adjacency zone which you know plays a hugely key role in terms of trying to ensure that the Confidence Building Measures are not breached and playing honest broker in the event any flashpoint incident between Belize and Guatemala were to occur. The Group of Friends which funds that office always made clear that this is not a blank cheque; we are doing this to get you to the point of the referendum. Delays in that regard I think can have a far more deleterious effect in terms of if they were to become impatient and to say that they withdraw their funding, I think that would be a disaster.”

 

Meanwhile, observers from the Commonwealth and CARICOM, including former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham have been in Belize since last week.  Members of the group held meetings with P.M. Barrow and various stakeholders. Their mission was to observe the referendum process, but with that being postponed, the members are now preparing to leave the country.


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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