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#459035 - 02/27/13 09:20 AM Today's Belize News: February 27, 2013
Marty Offline


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The San Pedro Sun

Tropic Air will inaugurate service from Belize City to Cancun on March 25th
Effective March 25th, 2013, Tropic Air will launch 6 weekly flights (daily except for Saturday) between Belize City’s Phillip Goldson International Airport (BZE) and Aeropuerto Internacional de Cancún, Mexico (CUN). Tickets are on sale now through March 24, 2013 at an introductory fare of $309 round trip from Belize City to Cancun for travel between March 25th, 2013 and December 15th, 2013. Fuel surcharge, taxes and other conditions may apply.

Ambergris Today

Belizeans Trained in Combating Illicit Trafficking Firearms, Ammunition and Explosives
An Inter-Institutional Training Course in Combating Illicit Trafficking in Firearms, Ammunition and Explosives started on Monday, February 25, 2013, at the National Police Training Academy in Belmopan. Sponsored by the United Nations Regional Center for Peace, Disarmament & Development in Latin America & the Caribbean (UNLIREC), the course is being attended by over fifty participants from agencies such as the Belize Police Force, Belize Defense Force, National Coastguard, Customs, Forensics Department, Scenes of Crime and Airport Security and Prisons. The Training Course will run for two weeks, from February 25 to March 8, 2013.

Government Issues Warning Against Clearing of Belize/Guatemala Border
Since last week, media houses in the city have been reporting about Mr. Will Maheia and his group called the Belize Territorial Volunteers who have set the date, Saturday, March 2, 2013, to begin a project called "Clearing Our Borderline." Media houses reported that a release from Maheia sent earlier last week says quote, "Over the past 30 years our borders have been neglected and as a result, several incursions have occurred into our beautiful, sovereign country. Guatemalans have come into the villages and pillaged people's farms and stolen their horses." It adds, "Our mission is simple, we exist to educate our people as to the reality of our Western border and to maintain a watchful eye, to ensure that Belize's territorial sovereignty is never called into question." It was with this in mind that the Government of Belize issued the following press release issuing a warning against the clearing of the Belize/Guatemala Border line: Belmopan, 25th February, 2013 - The Government of Belize, in discharge of its duty to ensure the safety and security of all persons in our country, hereby advises all members of the public that any attempt on their part to clear the Western Border can give rise to serious danger to themselves and we therefore strongly advise against participation in any such action.

Tropic Air Announces Service From Belize City to Cancun, Mexico
Tropic Air announced on Tuesday, February 26, 2013, that on Friday, February 22nd, after ten months of work, Tropic Air received a license from the Government of Mexico. Tickets for this highly anticipated flight from Belize International Airport to Cancun, Mexico, are now available for sale. Effective March 25th, 2013, Tropic Air will launch 6 weekly flights (daily except for Saturday) between Belize’s Phillip Goldson International Airport (BZE) and Aeropuerto Internacional de Cancún, Mexico (CUN). Tickets are on sale now through March 24, 2013 at an introductory fare of $309USD round trip from Belize City to Cancun for travel between March 25th, 2013 and December 15th, 2013. Fuel surcharge, taxes and other conditions may apply. Cancun is Tropic's first destination in Mexico and its third international route. Last year, Tropic added Belize City to San Pedro Sula, Honduras service to complement its existing daily Belize City to Flores, Guatemala route. This is in addition to its 11 domestic destinations within Belize.

Misc Belizean Sources

Help for Tio Jim Hanna
Long time San Pedro resident and family man, Jim Hanna, known to two generations of San Pedranos' as 'Tio Jim,' is suffering another bout with cancer. If the generous folks of the island can help him and his family with the cost of treatments ot would be a lifesaver. Contact Eve at 623-9962 eves1942@yahoo.ca or Jim at 622-8137 Gracias...

MFA scolds Wil Maheia
The Government of Belize, in discharge of its duty to ensure the safety and security of all persons in our country, hereby advises all members of the public that any attempt on their part to clear the Western Border can give rise to serious danger to themselves and we therefore strongly advise against participation in any such action. Proposed efforts as reported in the media may conduce to a disturbance of the peace and to unnecessary tensions between two countries, contrary to the long-standing efforts that successive Belize Governments have been working hard to secure. The danger inherent in such action can readily be seen from the details of a press conference which was called by then Prime Minister Said Musa on 26th February, 2000. Instructive excerpts of that speech are now reproduced in this release, and we quote:

Photos: Actun Tunichil Muknal Assignment
Just got done with post processing this assignment. It takes my back to my roots in adventure and travel. I did a lot of caving when I was a bit younger. ATM Cave was an absolute pleasure to photograph. I have to give a really, really, big thanks to Jamaal Crawford at PACZ Tours for providing the logistics and Jaime Awe at The Institute of Archaeology of Belize for commissioning me to photograph the cave. What a great way to start off the new year!

La Ruta Maya Cultural Night
Thursday 7th March 2013, Galen's Eagle Band Performing Live!

Tropic Air today announces that on Friday, February 22nd, after ten months of work, Tropic Air received a license from the Government of Mexico. Tickets for this highly anticipated flight from Belize City International Airport to Cancun, Mexico, are now available for sale. Effective March 25th, 2013, Tropic Air will launch 6 weekly flights (daily except for Saturday) between Belize City's Phillip Goldson International Airport (BZE) and Aeropuerto Internacional de Cancún, Mexico (CUN). Tickets are on sale now through March 24, 2013 at an introductory fare of $309 round trip from Belize City to Cancun for travel between March 25th, 2013 and December 15th, 2013. Fuel surcharge, taxes and other conditions may apply.

High Speed Vessel Swift Kicks off Southern Partnership Station in Belize
Are you wondering what are the stealthy looking highly armed, camouflaged speed boats doing in our lagoons and our Corozal Bay lately? It is the High Speed Vessel Swift Kick off Southern Partnership Station in Belize. Sailors disembarked High Speed Vessel Swift 2 here, Feb. 18, to begin Southern Partnership Station 2013, a U.S. 4th Fleet deployment designed to strengthen civil and maritime capabilities with regional partner nations in the Caribbean. The team was comprised primarily of Seabees from Riverine Squadron (RIVRON) 2 and Construction Battalion Maintenance Unit (CBMU) 202. Each team will spend time working with host-nation partners to strengthen relationships and joint interoperability. CBMU 202 Seabees will build a multipurpose open bay structure, known as a seahut, and provide the materials for up to two additional buildings. RIVRON 2 Seabees will share their expertise with the Belize Defense Force and help them improve their skills in areas such as interdiction and inserts and extracts of security teams on the water.

CRFM Ministerial Sub-Committee on Flyingfish calls stakeholders to action
Fisheries ministers who met on Friday, 22 February 2013, in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, to review urgent governance and management issues challenging the seven Caribbean countries that currently harvest the Eastern Caribbean flyingfish (scientific name: Hirundichthys affinis), are calling stakeholders across the region to action. At the ministerial meeting, convened by the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) and chaired by The Bahamas, the CRFM Ministerial Sub-Committee on Flyingfish issued a call to stakeholders, asking them to ensure that the necessary technical consultations and analyses are completed to ensure that the final Strategic Action Programme (SAP) report, which will be used to lobby for funding, adequately provides for the interests and needs of the people of the CARICOM/CRFM States. The ministers also called upon the countries to ensure that the consultations with stakeholders at the national level and the updating of the Draft Fisheries Management Plan for the flyingfish are completed in a timely manner, so that the final plan can be submitted to the Sub-committee for endorsement at its next sitting in May 2013 in Barbados.

New World Ups Working Interest in Belize Project
New World Oil and Gas Plc announced it has formally received a 75 percent working interest in its Blue Creek Project located in the producing Petén Basin in Northwest Belize. This follows the Belize Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment formally approving the assignment of a further 40 percent working interest in the Project to New World's wholly owned subsidiary, New World Oil and Gas (Belize) Ltd ('NW Belize'). The assignment follows the drilling of two exploration wells on the Blue Creek PSA 'B-Crest' location, as detailed in the Farm-Out Agreement ('FOA') announced on 16 June 2011. Having drilled two wells to date in Belize, the Blue Creek #2 and #2A ST, under the terms of the FOA, the Company is on track to earn-into a 100 percent working interest in the Project by drilling the West Gallon Jug Crest prospect to a total depth of 8,800 feet. Drilling will commence on this third well in March 2013.

How I Fell Madly In Love With Belize
In Belize, I fell down a cliff into Tiger Creek, 20 yards from an 800-foot waterfall, ruined my new camera, nearly lost my lucky hat and endured pounding rain and roads as bumpy as political budget talks. Yet, I can't wait to go back. I've had a long and enduring love affair with Latin America. To each new country, I give my whole heart. But there have been problems. I can't understand a single word anyone says. I have tried to learn Spanish, have even mastered a few questions that, to my ear, sound pretty authentic. But the minute someone answers back, I panic and end up looking like the idiot gringo I am. In Belize, because the official language is English, I could actually converse with locals. Instead of just exchanging smiles, I could share jokes, learn about their families and move the relationship beyond my normal ceiling of "Hola! Como Estas! Muy bien. Y tu?" It was magical, leading me to wonder, "Why in the heck haven't I been to Belize before?"

Prepare Now to See the Whale Shark Migration to Belize
Travellers wishing to experience the spectacular annual whale shark migration to Belize had better begin preparing now if they want to make the most of this rare opportunity, according to the Belize Natural History Centre at Chaa Creek. The whale shark is the world’s largest fish and the third largest animal on the planet. Long known in Belize as “Sapodilla Tom” due to its penchant for staying at the Sapodilla Cayes and Gladden Spit during its annual feeding and breeding season, the whale shark has a recorded length of 12.65 metres (41.50 ft) and weighs in at more than 36 tonnes (79,000 lb). Although they are true sharks (Rhincodon typus) that have changed little over the last 60 million years, whale sharks are peaceful creatures, allowing divers to come close as they lazily strain plankton and other food during their annual stopover in Belize.

Belizeans press for land reform
The Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association [BGYEA] and its social partners will be holding a national land reform rally on Tuesday at the steps of the National Assembly in Belmopan. The purpose of the rally is to highlight the need for increased transparency, efficiency and accountability in the management and distribution of national lands as well as to secure a commitment by the prime minister of Belize and the minister responsible for the distribution of land for their support for, as well as direct participation in a series of public consultations through which a national land reform policy can be developed and implemented. Among the reform objectives are the implementation of measures (1) to address the various forms of corruption that are said to have been allowed to thrive across successive governments; and (2) to promote poverty alleviation through first time land ownership drives and the implementation of incentives for small scale agricultural development. Various traditional and nontraditional options for civic participation are being made available to those who wish to support the initiative.

CREOLE BUN & Creole Bread
-2 lbs flour (4 cups) -1/2-3/4 lb brown sugar (1 cup) -2 tbsp instant yeast -2 tsp sugar 3/4 cup warm water 1 cup raisins (optional) -6 tbsp butter -2 tsp vanilla -1 tsp nutmeg -1 tsp cinnamon -1-1/2 cups coconut milk Set yeast in deep bowl. Put flour, sugar, nutmeg and cinnamon. Make a hole in the center. Melt butter, add milk and vanilla (warm slightly). Do not boil. Add yeast to warm milk. Add milk mixture to flour. Mix with a wooden spoon until it holds together, knead and put to rise. Knead again on a floured board. Cut into 6 pieces. Form into round balls. Flatten slightly. (Put in greased baking pan). Let rise until double in size.

VIDEO: The Belikin La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge
Here is a little teaser for the upcoming 2013 Belikin La Ruta Maya Belize River Challenge. See you on the river!

National Youth Policy of Belize Launch
The National Youth Policy of Belize Launch is today, and the Department of Youth Services in Benque has a free bus to take people to the Bliss Centre to support it. "A bus is scheduled to leave Benque Viejo from in front of the 'marshallleck Cancha' on Wednesday February 27, 2013 at 7:15am. Transportation is free...for more information contact Jimmy Leslie @ 803-3027 or 633-5050 or visit your nearest DYS office in your area if not from Benque Viejo."

Homemade Coconut Milk
Most people know about coconut milk in the can, so Joe decided to teach us how coconut milk is made. Homemade coconut milk is free of additives and preservatives. This milk can be used to make breads, and rice and beans.

HOW TO set up your device for Digicell 4G services [VIDEO]
Digicell, Belize's top cellular service provider, have just released this new video on their Facebook page on How to set up your device for Digicell 4G services. Hope it helps you. UPDATE: If you are unable to play the video above, you might be having some problems with a plugin on your computer. You can also view the video at this link:

Fashion Street
Institute of Creative Arts (ICA) invited The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) in its participation at Fashion Street. The event was held downtown Belize City, on Albert & Dean Street, Saturday February 23, 2013, from 2:00 pm to 10:00 pm. A total of 1 booth (with dimensions 10‘x 20‘) was endowed to BELTRAIDE. Fashion Street, directed at strengthening and supporting Creative Industries, showcasing live art, fashion and a wide selection of entertainment, gave artists the opportunity to showcase their talent and artwork to a crowd.

Channel 7

BGYEA Protest Small But Fiery and Full Of Foreboding
Today, the capital city hosted its second protest in a month. The teachers were first, UB students second, the UB Faculty third, and today it was BGYEA and other groups. Their issue is land distribution; they say it favours the rich and well connected. It's a complaint that can find resonance all across Belize, as so many people feel - many of them justifiably - that they have been excluded from the land distribution process. But, while it's a common cause not that many were prepared to take the day and take it to the streets of Belmopan today. Jules Vasquez was there to see the crowd: Jules Vasquez reporting The crowd of about 135 made the procession around Ring Road with drums, music, and placards. The main message Nigel Petillo, BGYEA "Land for the needy." Crowd "Land for the needy." Nigel Petillo, BGYEA "What do we want?" Crowd "Transparency." If you couldn't make it out, the call was "Land for the needy, not the greedy." That inequity in the land distribution system was the unifying force behind this demonstration:

Clearing the Land In Blackman Eddy
And today in Blackman Eddy village they put BGYEA's message into action: villagers marked an area of land, and started clearing it immediately. It's the Harmonyville model: designate a community parcel of land, occupy it, and then force authorities to catch up. Villagers started chopping this morning and when we visited this afternoon, they were still at it. Shirley Mai White, Candidate for Village Council, Blackman Eddy "Myself born Belizean 42 years old and don't have a land." Jules Vasquez reporting And she wasn't alone; many other villagers from Blackman Eddy shared her predicament. So, this morning they came here to this area at the back of the village. Shirley Mai White "I heard and know about this land but then I came and told them; I showed two persons. They want back and tell the others. News in Belize flies faster than the media. When I look this morning there was a heap of people here." Word is that 40 lots for villagers had been set aside here for distribution, but years passed and nothing happened. And so today, a group of over a hundred villagers took matters into their own hands, they started clearing the area:

Armed Police And BDF Guard Court For Mexican Accused
This morning, the Belize City courthouse was secured by heavily armed and masked police and BDF; they were preparing for the worse because 22 year old Mexican, Zurisaday Villasenor Mendez was brought to the Belize City Court for trial. You may recall his name: police say he was caught with an arsenal of weapons, cocaine, and marijuana at the Corozal Free Zone. That happened on on, 30 of 2012, when Corozal police raided 2 rooms at the Las Vegas Hotel in the Corozal Free Zone where they found 7 guns - which included AK-47's - 12 magazines, 144 bullets, several small quantities of marijuana, cocaine, and communication equipment. Mendez was suspected to be connected to all of these items, but in the end, he was only charged for the illegal items found in the room he was in. Those charges included 1 count of keeping an unlicensed firearm, 1 count of keeping unlicensed ammunition, 1 count of keeping a prohibited firearm, 1 count of keeping prohibited ammunition, possession of control drugs, and drug trafficking. For the past 3 months, He has been standing trial in the Corozal Magistrate's Court, with the Cayo Magistrate transferred from San Ignacio just to preside over the case.

11 Year Old Dies From Snakebite
Today, the standard five class at St. Edmond Campeon Roman Catholic School in Teakettle Village had one empty seat among its 31 students. That was for 11 year old Monique Moore, who was bitten by a snake on Sunday night - and died, 24 hours later, at 7:15 last night. Today we spoke to her family about the tragic loss:.. Jules Vasquez reporting 15 year old Amelisha Reyes and her 11 year old cousin Monique Moore were walking here on Young Gial Road in Teakettle on Sunday night. The streetlight isn't working. In the dark, the two girls joked about a drunken man on a bicycle and then suddenly: Amelisha Reyes, Cousin of Deceased "We went down the road laughing and when we reach she said see the dude there and then when I turn and watch I saw her kick her foot like this and then she pull back and I told her a snake and she said yes I know it bite me. I ask her where and she showed me the two bite marks. I took her sandals and I told her to hurry up so we can tell somebody. We cross the fence and when I was going in she held my hand and watches me and tells me that she feel dizzy. I told her that we soon reach and then she let go my hands and fainted right there and she got a seizure or something."

Man Remanded For Carnal Knowledge
22 year-old Marlon Dawson, a mechanic from Gardenia Village, is in jail tonight after he was brought to court today for allegedly having sexual relations with a 13 year-old female minor. The minor, accompanied by her father, visited the Human Services on last week Friday and reported that on December 14, 2012, Dawson had intercourse with her at a house in the village. As a result, police investigated the report, and they arrested and charged Dawson with carnal knowledge. He was arraigned today before Magistrate Dale Cayetano this afternoon, who could not offer him bail due to the nature of the offence.

Woman Sentenced For Drug Trafficking
31 year-old Elvia Dominguez, resident of Biscayne Village, is at prison tonight after she was convicted of drug trafficking today in the Magistrate's Court. In August of last year, at about 10:30 p.m., police were on mobile patrol in the Conch Shell Bay area, when they searched a taxi, with two occupants, Dominguez, and a male driver. The officers searched the taxi and the driver, but they didn't find anything illegal. However, when they searched Dominguez, they found a black bag which contained 112 grams - or 3.95 ounces - of cannabis inside her sling bag. She was arrested and charged with drug trafficking. Today in court, when Dominguez was given a chance to defend herself, she denied the allegations. She told the court that that on that day, she went to the Municipal Airstrip and heading back home, she caught a taxi. She said that another man caught the taxi earlier with her but he was dropped off in the Conch Bay area, a short while before police stopped and searched them. She told the Chief Magistrate Smith that all she knew that she had in her purse was a big butcher knife, but no marijuana, and she didn't know how it got in there.

Marijuana At Fresh Pond
33 year-old Andy Alford, a Fresh Pond Villager, is at prison tonight after he was taken to Magistrate's Court for marijuana possession. Police searched his home at Fresh Pond at around 4 p.m. yesterday, and they found 113.1 - or approximately 3.99 ounces - of weed inside a van which was parked in front of his house. He was arrested and charged with drug trafficking, and he was arraigned before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith today. Due to the fact that he has several convictions for drug offences, and he is a parolee, Chief Magistrate Smith couldn't grant him bail, and he was remanded to prison until his next court date on April 19, 2013. He must serve the rest of his sentence for the drug trafficking conviction he was out on parole for.

Customs Shares Seizure With Other Law Enforcement Units
Last year on Christmas Eve, the customs department along with the Coast Guard and the Anti-Drug Unit seized an impressive array of equipment. It has been forfeited and today it was donated to the BDF and the Belize Coast Guard. 7news was at the handing over this afternoon. Gilbert Gordon - Public Relations - Customs "What happened yesterday is that the Belize Customs Department was donating $49,000 products that were confiscated when the Customs Department along with the Belize Coast Guard and the Anti-Drug Unit intercepted a vessel on the 23rd December last year in San Pedro. The goods were then forfeited and they find was around $92,000. The Department already collected $45,000. Being that the goods were forfeited, the department is now giving the items to the Belize Defence Force as well as the Belize Coast Guard." "What we did was an official certificate handing over to the Belize Defence Force as well as the Belize Coast Guard and the value of items that was handed over to the Belize Defence Force are valued at $12,000 and the Belize Coast Guard valued at $37,000." "The items that we have that we are handing over are dicing gears. For the Belize Defence Force we are handing over 4 units of dive suits, 4 units of dive jackets, 4 units of scuba compass, 10 sets maintenance kits and units of pressure kits and regulators and pressure gauge hose."

Dangriga Coastline In Jeopardy
Is Dangriga losing its coastline to erosion? That's the question we asked after we saw two pictures TAKEN IN FORNT OF THE SOCIAL SECURITY OFFICE: the first taken in July of 2012, and the second in January of this year. The difference is alarming in just five months - and now it is threatening to undermine a few coastal properties, We asked the mayor what's the cause and what can be done to fix it:.. Major H. Gilbert Swazo (Ret'd), Mayor, Dangriga "The coastal erosion is a relevant issue. We believe that it may be as a result of one; the mining that is happening up river. We believe that may be a contributing factor. We also believe that it may be attributed to climate change and there are other issues such as growing; for example the Dangriga Town Pier was improperly constructed, such that the normal tide action is not allowing the delta - first and foremost the mining up river is presenting the usual sand budget to go to the delta, so that the sand cannot be spread as it should be. Similarly when you put grow-in and they are not properly constructed - that also present the spread of the sand that is coming from those rivers. Those things in our humble opinion contribute to the erosion that is taking place."

Finally, Belize Cattle Make It Across Border For Legal Export
Finally, Belize has successfully exported a legal truckload of cattle to Mexico. In the 90's the BEEF trade thrived between the neighboring countries, but that was before mad cow and foot and mouth disease. Since then, the Mexicans, as part of NAFTA, were forced to enact strict standards for animal health, and it took Belize more than a decade to catch up. But, finally, we have and yesterday after some ominous delays, the Mexican Cattle Truck pulled into Blue Creek, all the inspections and paper work were taken care of, the shipment was sealed by BAHA, and then sent off to the northern border crossing. When it finally made it across a collective sigh was surely heard. As the cattle-men explain, it's an opportune time to get the trade going: Albert Reimer, Cattle owner "We've been working on this for a long time. It's finally coming to past we think, if we can get them across the border and we hope that this is the opening of a new business, enterprise that we are going to follow. We need more market and I think it's going to help the beef industry a lot. This has been a learning experience for us because we now see what the quality is and that they require and also the sanitation requirements that we have to meet and we have to learn to have product that's constant. I refer to as a box of Corn Flakes, when you buy you know what you get. That's what we need to do with our animals; they have to be the same quality, size, sanitation requirement every time."

Channel 5

Belizeans protesting for land; BGYEA on the Hill
An orderly and peaceful demonstration over a huge problem took place in Belmopan this morning. It was organized by the grassroots organization called BGYEA which for years has been agitating for titles for land at Harmonyville, a community on the George Price Highway.  Frustration at not being able to get their stake in the jewel, [...]

Mexican national’s drug and ammo case moved to Supreme Court
The case against Mexican national, Zurisaday Villasenor Mendez first started last December in the Corozal Magistrate Court. Villasenor is charged for prohibited ammunition, kept firearm without a license and possession of cannabis and cocaine following a bust at the Las Vegas Casino in Corozal. The case has run into numerous legal challenges and today Villasenor [...]

Do you support NGO’s machetes clearing the border?
With the Referendum now becoming a hot button issue, our last online poll question asked viewers if they support taking the Guatemalan claim to the ICJ? An overwhelming seventy percent voted no while thirty percent said yes. Turning to tonight’s question: Do you support the Clearing of the Border project by the Belize Territorial Volunteers? [...]

Squatters clear land and face resistance
While a protest was taking place in Belmopan over unjust land distribution, not far away in Blackman Eddy, residents took the bull by the horn. They literally took over a plot of land designated years ago for village expansion and began clearing it after being given the run around by the Ministry of Natural Resources. [...]

Words of former P.M. on B.D.F. arrests along border in 2000
The Belize Territorial Volunteers will take at least one hundred machetes to clear a border line as part of a project called “Clearing the Border.” The Guatemalans are apparently against the exercise and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had issued a statement regarding the danger of the exercise.  But organizers say scouts, volunteers from several [...]

Foreign Affairs says P.U.P. and U.D.P. leaders clarified maritime area
Foreign Minister Elrington also discussed the Maritime Areas Act.  On February eleventh, Minister Elrington said, “The only place I think there is room for some surprise would have to be in the sea area or perhaps in the insular area because those are not yet defined.”  That comment triggered the wrath of former Foreign Minister [...]

Guatemala’s Comision de Belice replaced
As we have reported, the Comision de Belice which was an arm of the Guatemalan Foreign Ministry established to monitor the Guatemalan dispute was dismantled late last week. The Foreign Minister, Fernando Carreras, said it was dissolving the agency because it had failed to advice the government in a timely fashion of the change to [...]

Teen sexually molested by someone known to her
In the north, a sixteen year old minor of Sarteneja Village reported to police that her step-father has been having sex with her against her will since the age of fifteen. And the most recent encounter, she alleges, was on February fourteenth. According to the minor, the sexual encounters would take place whenever her stepfather [...]

No southern charm, couples take disputes to court
Two couples in the south are heading to the courts to settle their domestic disputes.  Forty-three year old cook, Irene Arzu, of Punta Gorda Town reported to police that on Sunday night at ten thirty, she was physically assaulted by her common-law husband, Ivan Jones. Jones, she claimed, slapped her several times on the face, [...]

She claimed the butcher knife, but not the weed in bag
  A waitress of Biscayne Village was slapped with a stiff fine for drug trafficking of one hundred and twelve grams of cannabis which is a little over three ounces.  The incident occurred on August third 2012 when the taxi Elvia Dominguez was travelling in, was stopped by police.  Nothing incriminating was found inside the [...]

Small vendors moved because of Sustainable Tourism Programme
There is another problem between street vendors and the Belize City Council. Over the weekend vendors that were previously at ground zero were moved to the Battlefield Park because of the ongoing Sustainable Tourism Programme. As you would guess the vendors are not taking the move quietly for a number of reasons. Duane Moody found [...]

Customs Department’s generous donation to B.D.F. and Coast Guard
The Customs Department this afternoon gifted a list of confiscated marine equipment to both the B.D.F. and the Coast Guard. The items were seized last Christmas Eve during an exercise that involved the three agencies. The list ranges from dive suits to scuba compasses, pressure hoses and maintenance kits. Duane Moody was present for the [...]

National Security donates 2 vehicles to police department
The B.D.F. and Coast Guard are not the only one who received generous donations. The Ministry of National Security on Monday also donated two Mahindra vehicles to the police department to assist in combating crime in the west and south. Minister of National Security, John Saldivar, handed over the vehicles to the Police Department; one [...]

#459036 - 02/27/13 09:21 AM Re: Today's Belize News: February 27, 2013 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

More News: Scroll up from here


Minor Alleges That Step Father Had Sex With Her In front Of Mother
There is a disturbing report of carnal knowledge coming out of the Village of Sarteneja in the Corozal District involving a 16 year old female and her stepfather. The girl visited the Corozal Police Station where she reported that since the age of 15 her stepfather has been having sexual intercourse with her against her will. According to the female, the sexual abuse would occur every two weeks when her stepfather, who is a fisherman, would come back from sea. The last time the abuse took place was on February 14th. What’s more shocking about this report; though, is that the minor has stated that each time her stepfather would have sex with her it was in the presence of her mother. Tired of the abuse, the victim decided to file a report at the police station before her stepfather returns from sea. A medical examination has concluded that the minor is carnally known. Due to the nature of the crime, and for the minor’s protection, we will not release the name of the stepfather who police are now seeking for questioning.

Robbers Caught Red Handed
Reports reaching our newsroom are that the Saint Francis Xavier Parish in Corozal has for the third time fallen victim to the hands of robbers. On the first two occasions the parish was broken into, the burglar or burglars got away with an undisclosed amount of cash and valuable items summing to a handsome thirty seven thousand dollars. This past Sunday, two men of unknown identity wearing dark clothing entered the parish’s compound a little before 7:00pm. Luckily, the watchman who was on duty, surprised the individual’s and immediately called the police. In sight that they were caught red handed the men escaped by running towards the children’s park located in the area and disappeared into the multitude attending the House of Culture’s Anniversary Celebration. Police are investigating. Since the first break in the parish upgraded their security by placing burglar bars on all doors and windows.

Lucky To Be Alive After Serious Traffic Accident
The driver of a Mitsubishi Endeavour is lucky to be alive tonight after her vehicle crashed into a truck loaded with cane. The remains of the vehicle are proving enough of how catastrophic the accident could have been but luckily its driver merely sustained minor injuries. The accident occurred this morning around 12:45 when the driver of the Mitsubishi Endeavour lost control of the vehicle near mile 56 of the Philip Goldson Highway and collided into a loaded cane truck which was traveling from Corozal to Orange Walk. Reports are that 30 year old Chinese National Xiao Long Ghu and her two passengers Fulgencio Sabido and Ricardo Cab, both from the Village of San Pablo, were traveling to San Pablo when the accident occurred. We understand that while Ghu received scratches to her face and hand Sabido and Cab escaped unhurt. As for the vehicle, well, the footage speaks for itself, it was totally damaged. Police are investigating.

Home Owner Defends Home Against Burglars
A man from the Village of Progresso is tonight recuperating from a frightful ordeal after his home was on the verge of being burglarized. The owner of the resident, a 68 year old Belizean National of Progresso Village, reported to police that on the 23rd of February at around 9:30pm he was at home in bed when he heard a noise coming from the kitchen area. Upon making checks he noticed that the glass louvers of the kitchen window were broken and making his way inside the house was a male person of dark complexion. According to the 68 year old, he shouted at the individual and threatened to shoot him if he did not back away from the window. But that’s not the end of the story. While one intruder had been scared off, another was trying to get in the house through the back door. The second individual, also of dark complexion, was wearing a white baseball cap, white t-shirt and a white rag over his face. Luckily the 68 year old managed to activate his alarm system thus causing the assailants to make good their escape. Police have detained one person pending investigations.

Another Orange Walk Business Robbed
It seems that robbery is becoming a norm here in Orange Walk because news tonight is that another business establishment was robbed at gunpoint last night. According to police, a little after 7:30, three male individuals with shirt covering their faces, barged into Rosa Mini Mart on Santa Rita Road and proceed to rob the proprietor. Reports are that two of the men were armed with a handgun and sawed off shot gun. Fortunately no one was hurt during the robbery but we understand that the assailants escaped with an undisclosed amount of cash and a gold chain. Police investigations continue. This is the fifth arm robbery that we have reported on for the month of February alone.

Family Says The Death Of 65 Year Old Was An Accident
Last night we told you about the death of 65 year old Alejandro Itzab Sr. from the Village of Palmar in the Orange Walk District. Iztab was interned at the Karl Huesner Memorial Hospital for about two weeks after he suffered a head injury on February 9th between 7:30pm and 8:00pm. Itzab died at the KHMH yesterday morning at about 9:00 while under life support. Up to news time last night, details of how Itzab sustained his injury were hard to come by. Reports were that he had an argument with one of his sons during which time he was injured. As mentioned, we were unable to speak with the deceased family yesterday, but today, we went looking for answers. According to Itzab’s daughter, Yesenia Itzab, contrary to rumors, her father’s death was an accident. Yesenia Itzab, Daughter Mi padre estaba aquí en el “verandah” y la cosa es que yo no estaba aquí, pero dicen que mi padre salió a fumar su cigarro. Uno de mis hermanos estaba borracho, pero la cosa es que él se fue y mi padre se quedó solo. De repente oyeron una explosión y cuando salieron vieron a mi padre tendido en el “verandah”. Se llevaron a mi padre al hospital y de allí lo llevaron a Belice para un “cat scan”, pero él se quedó allí. Durante estos días que estaba mejorando, ya estaba hablando bien. Es entonces cuando uno de mis hermanos le preguntó qué había pasado y me dijo que había resbalado. Ahí es donde sufrió un stoke y murió.”

12 Year Old Still On Life Support, Needs Blood
Last night we brought to you the tragic story of a 12 year old boy from Orange Walk Town who fell off a tree on Sunday evening and sustained severe head injuries. In a correction to the story aired the boy’s name is Graciano Ramos and not Graciano Briceno as previously mentioned. The 12 year old standard three student of La Inmaculada Primary School is presently on life support at the Karl Huesner Memorial Hospital. The child’s prognosis is uncertain since he sustained a fractured skull and his brain is swelling. Today when we spoke to Ramos’ mother, Melissa Mencias, she told us via phone, that her son is fighting for his life but just this morning he suffered another complication. Melissa Mencias- Mother “Well he is not doing that good. This morning he had another complication and one of his lungs collapsed. He has been losing a lot of blood so we need blood for him and his heart rate is low.”

Finally Cattle Exported To Mexico Legally
On August 2012 we showed you the herd of cattle in Blue Creek that was being prepared for legal exportation over the Mexican border. The process itself is called the Belize National Sanitary Cattle Plan Project but it is commonly known as Cattle Sweep. The initiative is a joint effort between the Government of Belize and the Belize Life Stock Producers Association in Blue Creek. The aim is to have each head of cattle tested and screened in order to meet Mexican Standards but most importantly for the animals to be ready for legal exportation. The good news tonight is that after more than 6 months of intensive work, Belize legally exported 44 heads of cattle to Mexico yesterday afternoon. Forty five heads of cattle were scheduled for export but one of the animals was left behind due to a mix up on its ear tags. The animals were shipped away to Tabasco Villahermosa where they will be slaughtered for beef.


LightHawk In Chiquibul Assists Park Protection
Cool video -- 8:46 minutes. They check for illegal gold panning and other activities near the border and in the adjacency zone.

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Gifting Hands Foundation
These days many teenagers finds their entertainment in partying, hanging with friends and family, traveling and other sorts of fun but Wendy Castillo finds her entertainment in helping the less fortunate. She is a proud graduate from Saint Catherine’s Academy and is now studying Finance through an online school program. She lives on Caye Caulker and is an employee at Caye Dreams Real Estate. Gifting Hands Foundation was founded on June 1st 2012 by Wendy. Here is how she describes her foundation and how she came up with this idea to help the less fortunate. She welcomes toys, clothing and any other form of donations. To contact Wendy about her foundation and how you can contribute you can email her at wmari.cast@gmail.com. Mission: En sculpture the humanitarian act of assisting the needy; through decent actions, clothed with love and care. Neglecting the wants of thy self and covering the hearts of young heroes to a brighter season. Purpose: Reaching the Homo sapiens that pose of great hidden talents, yet are restricted to a bed, wheel chair or simply the end of life- because of an unplanned illness or deficiency. Gifting Hands Foundation was generated by a seventeen year old teen who was met with life’s negative lane at an early age, seeing the actions committed at her doorstep to conclude with assets that neither could take at the end of this life; she was forced to be strong and capture the minds of those that saw her and be an upfront for her family. Perhaps, not only by herself but her mother and God above all. As she went on her daily journey to school, she saw the changes of the sunrise to a sunset; the rise of the less fortunate through the crumbs of the wealthy and insensitive human souls.


Yesterday’s boxing card at Bird’s Isle was a refreshing re-start of a long lost tradition in the old capital, boxing in the morning at the “Island” before football in the afternoon at the Barracks. The weather was fine – bright sunshine and a fresh southeaster – and though the Island was not packed, there was still a boisterous crowd of close to 300 fight fans on hand to witness an all Belizean amateur card that included female boxers for the first time. Some old timers from the past glory years of boxing in Belize grumbled a bit about the low level of skill displayed on Sunday, but, like most fans present, they also soon found themselves caught up in the energy and excitement brought by the combatants. The show began around 12:30 p.m. with solo exhibitions by female boxing sisters, teenaged Tassiyana and 9-year-old Sassani Tucker, who took turns at going through a one-round boxing routine with trainer Clinton Tucker. In the first of seven 4-round bouts, Brandon Aguilar (143 lbs) from Lions Den Cayo won a unanimous decision over Edwardo Garcia (138 lbs) of Lions Den Ladyville. Next was Rayford Smith (130 lbs) of Lions Den Ladyville gaining a split decision over Simeon Lino (140 lbs) of Leo Pol Gym. In the 3rd bout, “J.R.” of Leo Pol Gym won a unanimous decision over Brinton Flowers of Lions Den Ladyville. The 4th bout was a real crowd pleaser as the bigger boys, Orin “Breda Justice” Velasquez (170 lbs) of Lions Den Ladyville slugged it out with Anderson Petillo (174 lbs) of Leo Pol Gym, with Petillo gaining the unanimous decision. In the 5th bout, the smaller Kenyon Wright (175 lbs) of Lions Den Ladyville pulled out a unanimous decision over Richard “Chino” Peyrefitte (190 lbs) of Lions Den Cayo.

Undefeated defending champion Belmopan Bandits FC made it 3 victories in a row in Week 3 of the Premier League of Belize (PLB) 2012-2013 Closing Season with their come from behind 3-2 win over sub-champions Police United FC on Saturday night at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium. The victory maintained the Bandits’ grip not only on first place in the present competition, but also in the aggregate standings (of both the last and the current regular seasons) of the race toward participation in this year’s CONCACAF Champions League tournament. (See standings at bottom.) It was 1-1 at half time, after Amin August, Jr. put the visiting Police in front at the 25th minute, and Jerome “Jarro” James equalized for the Bandits at the 40th. Daniel “Danny” Jimenez gave the visitors another lead at the 50th minute, but again the Bandits equalized, this time through Jeremy Bermudez at the 75th minute, to make it 2-2. David Trapp then got the game winner for the Bandits at the 82nd for the 3-2 final score. It was another tough loss for a game Police squad, who were unfazed by the return of Bandits’ MVP goalie Woodrow West, whose net was shaken twice in his first outing this season. The 3 other PLB Week 3 games were played yesterday, Sunday.

“Guatemala’s internal war, like the other conflicts soon to follow in Central America (in El Salvador and Nicaragua especially), was usually depicted in the context of rivalry between the United States, the Soviet Union, and Cuba, and local causes were downplayed, but in fact it was essentially a war to protect an entrenched elite. By the early 1980s, the Guatemalan Army’s highest-ranking officers had become wealthy. Almost all the death squads operating in Guatemala were linked to the Army, although their activity was regularly blamed on rogue right-wing extremists. Either you supported military dictatorship and the oligarchy or you were regarded as a leftist.” - pg. 16, THE ART OF POLITICAL MURDER, Francisco Goldman, Grove, 2007 On the Guatemala matter, there has always been a disconnect between elected PUDP governments and the masses of the Belizean people. Why has this been so? It has been so because elected governments in Belize have to accept advice and instruction, in general terms, from the Americans and the British where the Guatemala matter is concerned. The masses of the Belizean people do not feel constrained to accept any such advice and instruction, so that their opinion on the Guatemalan matter is always manifestly different from that of the government. In 1968, the opinion of the Belizean people on the Seventeen Proposals was different from the approach of the George Price PUP government. Ditto in 1981 where the Heads of Agreement were concerned. And in 2013 there is a disconnect between the Belizean people’s opinion on the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and the formal opinion of the Dean Barrow UDP government, which has said “yes” to the ICJ.

“(Galileo) wanted to go back to Florence, partly, it seems, because he wanted to persuade the smart, well-educated Jesuits who clustered there to accept his world picture. Sell the powerful Jesuits on the New Science, he thought, and you wouldn’t have to worry about the Inquisition or the Pope.” - pg. 106, THE NEW YORKER, February 11 & 18, 2013 For the past five and a half centuries, the Jesuits have been the political arm of the Roman Catholic Church, which is the most powerful religious institution on planet earth. World class thinkers, scholars, and educators, the Jesuits also have a record for activist courage: they are not a cloistered order of tonsured monks. The Jesuits are out here in the fray. One of the great mysteries of Belizean politics is why the Jesuits chose, sometime in 1972 as far as anyone can figure, to hedge the Church’s political bets in Belize. Prior to the formation of the Liberal Party in 1972, the Church and the George Price-led ruling People’s United Party (PUP) had enjoyed a very warm relationship which benefited both parties.

Police say that Corina Coh, 24, of Laguna Village, Toledo, was murdered on Thursday, February 21, 2013, by a 16-year-old boy. According to reports, Coh was on her way to classes at the University of Belize, Toledo Campus, when she was approached by her attacker. Coh was found around 3:30 p.m. on Thursday by a member of the Belize Defense Force who was riding his bicycle into Laguna Village. The passerby said he saw Coh lying on the ground near the bushes with multiple chops on her body. He called for help and Coh was taken to the hospital, where she succumbed to her injuries while undergoing treatment. A post-mortem conducted on Coh’s body revealed that her death was caused by exsanguinations due to external bleeding from multiple chop wounds to her upper body.

La Comisión de Belice dissolved because the body failed to inform him of 2008 change in the Belize Referendum Act “La Comisión de Belice queda disuelta…” “The Commission on Belize is dissolved…” “…both sides had assumed a positive outcome, meaning a ‘yes’ vote, in the referendum, and neither they nor the special agreement contemplated what would happen should voters disapprove of the ICJ route for resolution.” Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina took a drastic measure last Thursday, February 21, when he disbanded La Comisión de Belice, an information/advisory agency on Belize matters which has existed inside the Guatemala Ministry of Foreign Affairs for more than 25 years, after an investigation indicated that it “neglected” its duty to inform their government of the 2008 change in the Belize Referendum Act. The change in Belize’s law was no secret, as it was hotly debated in Belize’s Parliament and it was furthermore, the subject of fierce public litigation in Belizean courts.

The trend of bloody weekend violence continues – three men were shot to death and another was chopped to death between Friday and Sunday. Dead are Ernest Savery, 37, of Perez Road, Ladyville; Orin Humes, 32, of La Milpa, Ladyville; John Gideon, 32, of Biscayne; and Jose Nimencio Guido Campo of Sunset Park Village, Belize District. The deadly weekend began on Friday, February 22. Police said that about 10:00 that night, a gunman, dressed in black, rode up on a bicycle and fired at Ernest Savery, hitting him multiple times in the stomach. Savery fell to the ground and the shooter escaped into the night. Savery was taken to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital (KHMH), where he was declared dead on arrival. Reports are that he had just exited his yard, and was going to the home of his mother-in-law on Perez Road in Ladyville when the gunman attacked him. However, Savery, who was a prison officer at the Belize Central Prison in Hattieville, has been targeted a few times for death by gunmen. On October 18, 2010, while travelling with two other prison officers in his car from the Belize Central Prison to Hattieville, on the Hattieville-Boom Road, a gunman, who was waiting in ambush, opened fire on his vehicle.

The grassroots organization will rally at the steps of the National Assembly building while Cabinet is in session Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association (BGYea) and its social partners will stage a National Land Reform Rally in Belmopan City on Tuesday, February 26, 2013, on the steps of the National Assembly Building from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Supporters attending the rally are asked to wear white T-shirts and the public is being reminded that it is not a political event. Nigel Petillo, the president of the organization, said that they are sure of a number of supporters coming from different areas of the country to participate in the demonstration. Interested persons can contact Petillo at 626-6168 or Yaya Marin Coleman at 661-8050. According to a press release issued by BGYea today, Monday, “the purpose of the rally is to highlight the need for increased transparency, efficiency and accountability in the management and distribution of national lands….” The organization wants to secure a commitment of support and direct participation by the Prime Minister and the Minister responsible for the distribution of land, in a series of public consultations through which a national land reform policy can be developed and implemented.

Belize government refuses protection to the nationalist group planning to cut border path between Belize and Guatemala – on the Belize side of the border! Wil Maheia told Amandala today that plans for the Belize Territorial Volunteers to execute the project, “Clearing Our Borderline,” at the border between Guatemala and Belize on Saturday, March 2, remain the same. The Belize Territorial Volunteers was formed, said Maheia, because “our borders have been neglected and as a result, there have been several incursions into our beautiful, sovereign country,” and their aim is “to ensure that Belize’s territorial sovereignty is never called into question.” Guatemalans, said Maheia, “have come into the villages and pillaged people’s farms and stolen their horses, and when they are caught, they claim ignorance about entering Belizean territory.” The plan, therefore, is to cut a path along the border three feet wide and in the first instance, six miles long, with “corn markers,” which are simply piles of rock, every 1,000 yards.

Today a jury of 12 persons unanimously found Japheth Bennett, 20, guilty of killing Ellis Meighan, Sr., 37. The murder occurred on September 13, 2009, at 8:30 p.m. Meighan was riding his bicycle at the corner of Banak Street and Central American Boulevard when someone came up behind him on a bicycle and shot him in the back of the head, killing him instantly. At the time of the shooting, police believed that it was retaliation for a shooting that one of Meighan’s sons was accused of committing, which had led to the younger Meighan being arrested and charged with attempted murder the week prior to Meighan being shot. No one was charged for the murder until October 26, 2009, when Bennett, who was a minor at the time, was arraigned for the brazen killing. The trial started on February 19, 2013, before Justice Adolph Lucas, Sr., with Kayshia Grant representing the Crown with assistance from Shanice Lovell, and Bennett being represented by Michael Peyrefitte.

The application process for attaining a Belizean passport has been revised and will go into effect as of Friday, March 1, 2013. A countrywide awareness campaign will be launched to inform the public of the new procedures. Six application forms have been added to the revised process, including specific forms for minors, adults, persons living abroad, and for persons applying for a passport replacement. This procedure will also apply to applications for a renewal of passports. Also, application forms will now need to be signed by various authorized personnel; this particular adjustment applies to section five of the application form, the Authentication of Application. For persons under 16 years of age, a recommender must be provided and there are two forms that must be filled out. Form 4-A must be filled out by a Justice of the Peace, minister of religion, medical practitioner, notary public, or an attorney at law. Form 4-B must be filled out by a member of the House of Representatives, chief executive officer in any ministry of the Government, a head of department, or a licensed teacher.


Full moon over the sea
Barry got some great photos last night of the full moon from our veranda. I couldn't pick just one, so I'll give you a series. It really was breathtaking.

Things I Saw Yesterday from Sands Villas to Buying a Bar Stool So Everybody Knows Your Name
Yesterday the high winds continued much to the dismay of divers...but to the delight of wind surfers. I saw quite a few ripping around in the afternoon. Since I am doing neither of those activities, the hot sunny weather seems pretty good to me. So after dropping my friend off at the airstrip, I took a few pictures. There are very few bars in town I haven't visited (not sure I should be bragging about that) but this is one of them. Directly across from the Maya Island Air, unfortunately at 10am the doors to "Free Kingdom" are dead-bolted. Wonder how they picked the name? The walk down the beach by Ramon's. Lots of people lounging on the lounge chairs. The sea is still quite cloudy but that should remedy itself over the next few days as the winds die down and switch directions.

International Sources

Mats of algae and seaweed have shrouded the once thick coral in shallow reefs off Jamaica's north coast. Warm ocean waters have bleached out the coral, and in a cascade of ecological decline, the sea urchins and plant-eating reef fish have mostly vanished, replaced by snails and worms that bore through coral skeletons. Now, off the shores of Jamaica, as well as in Caribbean islands from Bonaire to St. Croix, conservationists are planting fast-growing coral species to try and turn things around by "seeding" reefs. The strategy has doubters, with one expert joking that prayer might be as effective, but conservationists say the problem is so catastrophic that inaction is not an option. According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, live coral coverage on Caribbean reefs is down to an average of just 8 percent, from 50 percent in the 1970s

Belize-born teenager calls for UKYP votes
An ambitious young Dominican College pupil is bidding to become the first non-national member from Northern Ireland in the UK Youth Parliament. 14-year-old Ramel Flores, who is in his fourth year at the Portstewart college, is running in the East Londonderry constituency. Already cutting out a future political career for himself, Ramel lists his interests as peace and conflict resolution, law and mental health among the young. He says: “My aspiration is to be part of a diverse transformation of Northern Ireland and the communication link between our transforming societies. “I was born in the small country of Belize in the heart of Central America. Northern Ireland is my home and I am prepared to be part of the machinery that will move this nation to a new era.” Ramel and his family moved to the north coast in 2005 and he is now preparing to do his GCSEs at Dominican. He says he is a fan of the Italian politician and historian Niccolò Machiavelli and lists Sun Tzu’s The Art of War, the ancient Chinese military treatise, as one of his favourite reads.

New World Oil & Gas boss: Investors "exposed to tremendous upside"
As always New World Oil & Gas (LON:NEW) boss Bill Kelleher leaves his best shot till last. “We continue to do what we have always done – expose our shareholders to tremendous upside,” he says wrapping up our chat. He is referring to a summary at the end of his presentation that remains the basis on which most investors bought into the stock. It reveals that New World has 40 prospects, eight of them drillable – five in Belize and three in Denmark. Combined they add up to almost 400mln barrels of oil and more than two trillion cubic feet of gas with an indicative net present value of US$6.4bln. “It is what the institutions are keen on and why they invest in us – the big upside,” Kelleher adds.

earthrise Series two, episode one
earthrise returns with bees in Kenya's human-elephant conflict, diving for hardwood in Belize and Haiti's eco-toilets. The Belize River has been holding precious hardwoods cut more than 200 years ago that sank to the riverbed in the process of transporting them to the market. A new project now aims to reduce deforestation by tracking them down using modern technology.

Where in the world is San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize?
It occurs to me that perhaps a lot of people do not know anything about where we currently are. That what you have heard of Belize is the mainland and a city rife with crime where no one should ever be staying. Or perhaps you have never heard of it at all? I certainly had never heard of it until our good friends the Kings told us of how they lived here. When I heard their stories I knew I had to come. Anyway we are not on the mainland of Belize we are in the (only) town of San Pedro on the largest island of Belize called Ambergris Caye, located in Central America. This town has a population of about 13,381 and it seems everyone knows everyone. The island is roughly 40 km long north to south and about 1.6 km wide (tiny, right?) There is little Spanish spoken here. Most people speak English. My guess is that is influenced a lot by the amount of expats in the community as well as US tourism. The major tourism is divers as Ambergris Caye holds the second largest barrier reef after our one in Australia. My husband tells me it's actually because it's a British colony, I can't see anything British about it... What Brit eats beans and rice? :D

A Little Good News
What with the forms coming down and forms going up went at our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize yesterday I omitted to report on the meeting we had with Daniel Camal our building contractor. After much deliberation – and imagining how we would like to use every window in the house- we were able to finally (true to say that we have changed our minds quite a few times) exactly what windows windows we want. Aside from the three clerestory windows (Ground Floor self-contained apartment living room area, First Floor bedroom (Rose’s handicraft room) and the dining area on the First Floor) all windows ( of varying dimensions) will be the PGT Winguard’s SH500 (single hung) window. With this important decision taken we proceeded to run through the rest of our ‘agenda’ which ranged from using water from the well to flush the toilets (as opposed to using the rainwater collection tank), to the further mahogany wood stain shades we would like ( for kitchen cabinets, stair treads and doors) to showing Daniel the types of fences we would like for Tres Cocos and Fire Coral Street ( Daniel will now provide quotes) and the air-conditioning pipes near the clerestory windows (thanks to subscriber Steve Martin for that). At the end of the meeting we got a little good news from Daniel when he told us he is aiming to have our build in Ambergris Caye, Beliize finished by the middle of July. If this is achieved he will have brought the project in one month early.

Toucan Pictures from Lower Dover Field Station
Afternoon birdwatching and photos from Lower Dover with a Cannon point and shoot

Analysis: The need for Consensus on a National Security Policy
This essay was published in The Belize Times in 1998. At the time it reflected the attendant realities in so far as our national security. My colleague and I were addressing what we saw as a glaring indifference at that particular period in our nation’s history By: Hubert Pipersburgh and Derrick Estrada Current Assumptions Flawed: The recent cross-border incursion by terrorists is a focusing event of a very serious problem: The national security and territorial integrity of Belize may very well be at stake. The incident is but one recent example of how fluid the Belize/Guatemalan border is. The incident on that fateful Saturday morning on the Humming Bird Highway exposed the fragility of our nation’s ability to protect its citizens. Reportedly, the terrorists were well-armed professionals with advance intelligence on the methods employed by Belize’s security forces. Furthermore, they appeared very familiar with Belize’s terrain. Belizeans have always taken for granted the integrity of our borders. In the absence of any comprehensive peace agreement with Guatemala, perhaps the time has come for us to examine our overall national security policy and strategy and our nation’s ability to deal with any external threats to our sovereignty. It is time for us to abandon the carelessness and casual attitude that have characterized our national security in recent decades. To the extent that there is a current military policy in place to deal with any external aggressions, it was not evident on that fateful Saturday morning.

Mennonite Gurls A'ken Cook: Rice Puddin' Deluxe
Prepare yer favert vanilla custard. Whip up a pint uf whippin' creem, slightlee sweetened and laced with vanilla. Spred a layr uf rice puddin' on dinnr plate er plattr. Top with a layr uf vanilla custard. Garnish liberallee with whupd creem. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Indulge n' rice puddin' deluxe!

Mangroves - a secret weapon in combating climate change
~Earthwatch announces five-year research programme into carbon storage of tropical mangrove ecosystems~ Mangrove forests could be a secret weapon in the fight against climate change, according to scientists from Earthwatch. Earthwatch today announces a new five-year research programme into the potential of mangrove forests to store carbon and reduce the impacts of climate change. The research, which is supported by insurance company Aviva, builds on the findings of Earthwatch scientists Dr Mark Huxham, of Edinburgh Napier University, and Dr James Kairo, who, with support from Earthwatch, have been working in Gazi Bay, in the Kwale district of Kenya, for the past four years. "Mangroves have a vital role to play in reducing the impacts of climate change and extreme weather events," Nat Spring, Earthwatch's Senior Research Director explains. "They also have huge potential to store carbon in their root systems. This research project is very significant. We aim to provide robust biological and economic data on the role of mangrove forests in carbon storage."

VIDEO: Someday is NOW!
The Mesoamerican Reef is Belize's crown jewel and a major economic engine for the country. As the longest barrier reef in the Western Hemisphere, it provides this Central American nation with thriving lobster, conch and reef fish fisheries, a strong cultural icon, and a magnet for hundreds of thousands of tourists who come each year to enjoy its outstanding diving, snorkeling and fishing opportunities. This incredible resource is in peril. Unplanned development of coastal areas -- including dredging and filling of critical mangrove forests, contamination, and overfishing -- all threaten the reef and Belizean livelihoods. In Someday is NOW!, the people of Belize speak out, demanding a coastal zone management plan and a responsible path for development.

#459037 - 02/27/13 09:25 AM Re: Today's Belize News: February 27, 2013 [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline


BGYEA holds demonstration in Belmopan
BGYEA held a demonstration in the City of Belmopan today. President of the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association; Nigel Petillo led the crowd around the ring road this morning by singing his version of Bob Marley’s Redemption Song. The group of approximately 100, followed behind carrying flags of Belize,...

Stepfather sought for alleged sexual abuse
After almost a year of alleged sexual abuse by her step-father, a 16 year old speaks out. The minor, a resident of a village in the Corozal District, told police that her step-father has been having sex with her against her will since she was 15. The last time...

11 year old girl dies following snake bite
An 11 year old girl died last night as a result of a snake bite. 11 year old Monique Moro, a student of Teakettle village, was on her way to church on Sunday night when she was bitten by a snake. The little girl was along with her cousin...

Mexican transferred to Belize court
The case of 22-year-old student Zurisaday Villasenor Mendez of Chetumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico was in a Belize City court today. Mendez is accused of a raft of charges in relation to a firearms and drugs bust by Police at the Las Vegas Hotel and Casino in October of 2012,...

North Front Street vendors made to move to Battlefield Park
Nine food stall vendors previously located at the old site of the Paslow Building on North Front Street – colloquially known as “Ground Zero” – were made to move to the Battlefield Park in downtown Belize City over the weekend. One vendor we spoke to, Claudia Scott of Claudia’s...

Belmopan police investigating possible arson
Belmopan police are investigating a possible case of arson. On Saturday, a resident of the Salvapan area received a phone call from one her neighbors informing her that her house was fire. When the owner of the house arrived at her residence, her home was engulfed in flames and...

Woman Charged with Wounding Partner
A domestic quarrel turned ugly for a couple in Punta Gorda Town. But there are two sides of this story – Police say that a 43 year old woman reported that last week Sunday, around 10pm, she and her common-law husband got into a quarrel. The woman claims that...

Husband charged for Aggrivated Assault
There’s another domestic violence report, from the Toledo District. A 29 year old Guatemalan woman of a village in the district, told police that she was at home with her husband, who was under the influence of alcohol. She said that he started an argument with her and began...

Driver of garbage truck charged with manslaughter by negligence
On Friday of last week, a garbage collector lost his life when he was knocked down by the garbage truck he was working on. The accident happened in the Lake Independence area of Belize City sometime around 2:30 in the afternoon. The victim, Kenrick Sutherland was on his first...

US Camouflaged speed boats sighted in Corozal Bay
If you’ve been in the Corozal Bay area lately, you probably wondered what are those camouflaged speed boats doing in our lagoons? Well, those vessels are in Belize as part of a partnership designed to strengthen civil and maritime capabilities in the Caribbean. On February 18th, sailors from a...

Former Police Sergeant acquitted of perjury
A former Police Sergeant has been acquitted of perjury. Yesterday, Anthony Polonio was freed of the charge before Justice Troadio Gonzalez. The case goes back to October of 2007, when he and another officer were accused of lying under oath during a murder trial. That trial saw the acquittal...


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Chaa Creek is an award-winning luxury Belize Resort, rated as one of the worlds best Eco Lodges. We are a pioneer in adventure travel to Belize since 1981!
White Sands Dive Shop - 5 Star PADI Dive Facility - Daily diving, SCUBA instruction and Snorkeling
Caribbean Inspired All Natural Condiments & Spice Blends, Over 100 are Gluten Free!
We manage a variety of homes, apartments, condos and commercial properties here on Ambergris Caye. Our minimum lease on ALL properties is six months.
Conch Shell Inn: All rooms are right on the beach in the heart of San Pedro, so within walking distance to anything and everything!!
Lil’ Alphonse has snorkel equipment to fit anyone as well as Marine Park Tickets and flotation devices to assist those not as experienced.
Coastal Xpress offers a daily scheduled ferry run to most resorts, restaurants and private piers on the island of Anbergris Caye. We also offer  private and charter water taxi service.
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