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#507393 - 09/11/15 11:10 AM Guat presidential candidate wants Belize back
Marty Offline

Jimmy Morales says “loss” of Belize would be “deplorable”

He leads the race to become Guatemala’s next president, but comic actor Jimmy Morales is not joking about making Belize part of Guatemala.

The 46 year old who campaigned under the slogan “neither corrupt, nor a thief” goes to round two on October 25 against Sandra Torres Casanova, wife of former President Alvaro Colom.

Morales is considered a candidate with conservative values on several domestic matters in Guatemala – and those apparently include the Belize question.

Asked what he considered the “most deplorable” event in Guatemala’s history, he said it was happening right now: “…we are about to lose Belize. We have not lost it yet. We still have the possibility of going to the International Court of Justice where we can fight [for] that territory or part of that territory.

He added when asked if it was worth it: “I think that it is worth anything that is natural resources and of benefit to the nation. Like I said it deplorable anything that is a loss for Guatemala.”

After counting the votes of Guatemalan’s first round of presidential elections, it came as a surprise to many that former comedian and television actor Jimmy Morales would top the polls. He received approximately a quarter of the support from those who participated in Sunday’s elections.  Morales started late on the campaign trail and his slogan is, “neither corrupt, nor a thief”.  The second round of voting is to take place October 25 where Morales will go against Sandra Torres Casanova, wife of former President Alvaro Colom.  Morales is considered a candidate with conservative values on several domestic matters in Guatemala, but what has caught our attention is comments he made last month when he was interviewed by a Guatemalan reporter.  He said that the most deplorable event in Guatemala’s history is losing Belize but that there is hope in keeping her if both countries decide to go to the International Court of Justice.


“Are you ready to be President of the Republic?”


“I have been preparing since 1999.  In 2004 I took the decision that it’s what my heart desires.  Between 2004 to 2008 I was dedicated to find out what is the reason to run for president.  From 2008 to the present I have dedicated time to academically and politically prepare myself to serve.  I believe I have the characteristics needed which is leadership.  Leadership is what the nation needs in order to accomplish what the presidency really is.  The presidency is the figure that calls a nation to unity and which should ensure territorial integrity and which should also ensure that the laws are abide.  Precisely we are in those conditions and all the spirit to serve and ensure this happens.”


“Which Guatemalan historical event do you think is the most deplorable?”


“The most deplorable event – among all the things that have happened in Guatemala, there are certain things that are not spoken about and which I believe we should.  Everything that goes contrary to national unity and territorial integrity are things that should hurt us.  Something is happening right now, we are about to lose Belize.  We have not lost it yet.  We still have the possibility of going to the International Court of Justice where we can fight that territory or part of that territory.”


“Do you believe that it’s worth for Guatemala to recover Belize?”


“I think that it is worth anything that is natural resources and of benefit to the nation.  Like I said it deplorable anything that is a loss for Guatemala.”

Some Guatemalan political analysts believe Morales is not the strongest candidate and he may very well lose to Torres Casanova.  His comments regarding the Guatemalan territorial claim over Belize are of interest as if he manages to become president it may point to the direction his administration make take on the issue.  After Sunday’s elections, Jimmy Morales received 23.85% of votes while Sandra Torres Casanova received 19.74%.  The two will face each other on October 25.  It is yet to be decided if for the second round of the presidential elections a referendum to take the Guatemalan claim over Belize before the ICJ will be put to the voters.  In May this year, Belize agreed for Guatemala to proceed on its own to hold a referendum on the issue.


#507899 - 09/30/15 10:59 AM Re: Guat presidential candidate wants Belize back [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Is Dean Barrow Worried About Jimmy Morales?

In a few days following the results of from the First Round of Guatemala's Presidential Elections, the most popular candidate, Jimmy Morales, granted an interview to the Guatemalan Press. His comments suggested that he has eyes on Belize, and he did bring it up during an election cycle. That suggests that Guatemala's foreign policy could become more aggressive, even through the diplomatic channels, if Morales is elected as President.

It did not go unnoticed by persons in Belize where it went viral on the social media, but is Prime Minister Dean Barrow taking notice? He said yesterday that while it is cause for concern, Morales has to get elected first:

Hon. Dean Barrow, Prime Minister
"Let's wait and see. I don't know that he will necessarily win. We will deal with what happens when it happens. Look, he's made at least one statement that is troubling, but I am hoping that if he does win the Guatemalan foreign policy establishment, the Guatemalan political elite and certainly the international community will make absolutely clear to that gentleman that any notion of pursuing their claim in a way that is disruptive of the good relations between Belize and Guatemala, that is threatening to Belize simply will not be tolerated. So, I am sure that we will be able to deal with that situation if and when it occurs."

Since none of the Guatemalan Presidential candidates took 50% of the vote, a second round of voting has been scheduled for October 25. That result will determine who the next Guatemalan President is going to be.

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#507922 - 09/30/15 06:25 PM Re: Guat presidential candidate wants Belize back [Re: Marty]
Katie Valk Offline
Have to hope Sandra Torres wins? I guess..
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#507929 - 09/30/15 07:26 PM Re: Guat presidential candidate wants Belize back [Re: Marty]
SimonB Offline
Pretty much.

#507938 - 10/01/15 12:32 AM Re: Guat presidential candidate wants Belize back [Re: Marty]
elbert Offline
Do you think American Indians could take the USA back?
It's all so silly. No one alive remembers when Guatemala occupied this land, but they want it back??
Many times, privately, rational, educated Guatemalans have said to me that this is only an issue when an election is coming so leaders can incite emotions from the population.
Jimmy Morales is no different, he wants votes from a large percentage of the gullible population that believe such a ridiculous idea and being a rational educated man himself can not truly believe this could ever come to pass. He's being irresponsible with this comment and would be guilty if there are deaths on either side of a border dispute.
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#507940 - 10/01/15 06:36 AM Re: Guat presidential candidate wants Belize back [Re: elbert]
Short Offline
Guatemala never owned Belize:
The Treaty of Tordesillas (Tratado de Tordesilhas or Tratado de Tordesillas) signed at Tordesillas on June 7, 1494, and authenticated at Setúbal, Portugal, divided the newly discovered lands outside Europe between Portugal and the Crown of Castile, along a meridian 370 leagues west of the Cape Verde islands, off the west coast of Africa. This line of demarcation was about halfway between the Cape Verde islands (already Portuguese) and the islands entered by Christopher Columbus on his first voyage (claimed for Castile and León), named in the treaty as Cipangu and Antilia (Cuba and Hispaniola).

The lands to the east would belong to Portugal and the lands to the west to Castile. The treaty was signed by Spain, 2 July 1494 and by Portugal, 5 September 1494. The other side of the world would be divided a few decades later by the Treaty of Zaragoza or Saragossa, signed on 22 April 1529, which specified the antimeridian to the line of demarcation specified in the Treaty of Tordesillas. Originals of both treaties are kept at the Archivo General de Indias in Spain and at the Arquivo Nacional da Torre do Tombo in Portugal.

On 4 May 1493 the Pope Alexander VI (Rodrigo Borgia), a Aragonese from Valencia by birth, decreed in the bull Inter caetera that all lands west and south of a pole-to-pole line 100 leagues west and south of any of the islands of the Azores or the Cape Verde Islands should belong to Castile, although territory under Catholic rule as of Christmas 1492 would remain untouched.

Now back to Belize:
Spain sent expeditions to Guatemala and Honduras, and the conquest of Yucatán began in 1527. Though the Maya offered stiff resistance to Spanish "pacification", diseases contracted from the Spanish devastated the indigenous population and weakened its ability to resist conquest. In the 17th century, Spanish missionaries established churches in Maya settlements with the intention of converting and controlling these people. After the remaining Mayas abandoned their cities like Lubaantun and Lamanai in order to escape Christian conversion, the Spanish abandoned these areas because they were deemed worthless.

Northern European powers were increasingly attracted to the region by the potential for trade and settlement. These powers resorted to smuggling, piracy, and war. In the 17th century, the Dutch, English, and French encroached on Spain's New World possessions. The reefs that were difficult to navigate were ideal for hiding for Spanish warships and thus the Belize settlement was born, soon to harvest logwood on it's shores.

The rest is history:
The Treaty of London between James I of England and Philip III of Spain 1604, the Godolphin Treaty of 1670, in 1691 Guatemalan Archives "Escribania de Camaa 339" confirmed "Los Ingles" near to Indian villages by Lago de Isabel which they were forcefully depopulating, the treaty of Utrecht 1713, the treaty of Paris of 1763, Burnaby's Code in 1765, the treaty of Versailles 1783, the Battle of St. George's Caye 1798, the treaty of Amiens 1802.

The Baymen settlement was now an independant and self governing settlement of mainly British subjects (for certain purposes, in possession and under protection of his majesty, but not within the territory and dominion of his majesty - act of parliament 1817). 1821 Independence of the Empire of Mexico, including Guatemala, 1823 the United Provences of Central America, 1824 the Central American Federation, 1840 official independence of Guatemala (the five provinces of Central America).

Guatemala claimed the inheritance from Spain's old territories, but this was not possible as Mexico was the first independant nation in 1821. Mexico and Great Britain signed a boarder treaty in 1893 certifying the Sarstoon River on the south and the Rio Hondo on the north as legal boundaries of British Honduras. In 1859 Britain and Guatemala signed a boarder treaty, referring to the boundaries that existed before 1850, thus acknowledging British Honduras or Belize was NEVER owned by Guatemala. Part of this agreement for both parties was to "Use their best efforts by taking adequate means for establishing te easiest communication (cart road, rivers or both), between the fittest place on the Atlantic coast near the settlement of Belize and the Capital of Guatemala."

This is where the disagreement came, both agreed that Britain would provide technical input and that Guatemala would supply all the material needed, but where Charles Lennox Wyke thought they would share labour costs, Don Pedro de Aycinena was convinced that Britain would pay for labour in full. To resolve this problem, both parties agreed in 1863 that Britain would pay 50,000 Pounds Sterling to cover it's contribution and both would ratify this agreement within six months, which Britain did. Guatemala ratified it with "clarifications" in 1865 which Britain rejected.

Recent history:
1850 Clayton Bulwer Treaty, 1856 Dallas-Clarendon treaty, 1862 Colony of British Honduras 1871 British Honduras becomes Crown Colony status, 1931 cement columns were set instead of the pile stones (placed in 1859) at several locations and diplomatic notes were exchanged certifying the boundary, 1933 Britain and Guatemala certify the accuracy of the survey, 1973 British Honduras became Belize, 1981 Belizean Independence, 1992 Guatemala’s president formally recognized Belize’s independence.

I think that is it...
Live and let live

#508108 - 10/08/15 11:27 AM Re: Guat presidential candidate wants Belize back [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Guatemala’s “bad intentions” exposed!

The following diplomatic notes–the first from the Belize Government to the Government of Guatemala, and the second, a response from the Guatemalan Government to the Belize Government–came to Amandala today, courtesy Senator Lisa Shoman, former Foreign Minister 2007-2008, permanent representative to the OAS and Ambassador to the United States during the PUP administration of Prime Minister Said Musa.

We have her permission to publish the diplomatic notes for the edification of the Belizean public, whom have been denied access to the notes by Prime Minister Dean Barrow and Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington on the excuse that the observance of “diplomatic protocol” prevented them from doing so.

We need to point out that the Hon. Philip Goldson, in April 1968, returned with the infamous Webster’s 17 Proposals that was handed to Belizean officials in the form of a draft treaty at the UK Embassy in Washington, DC. Goldson did not waste any time in informing the Belizean people of the horrible plot against Belize by the British government.

We shudder to imagine what would have happened to Belize if the Hon. Goldson had been afraid of contravening “diplomatic protocol” and had not revealed the contents of the proposed agreement to a public ignorant of the British government’s duplicity, cynicism and betrayal.

We need to ask the question: which is more important – the observance of “diplomatic protocol,” or the education of Belizeans about the true nature of Guatemala’s hostility and naked aggression against Belize in pursuit of their unfounded claim to our country?

The Belize Government’s “extremely strong” protest note to the Guatemalan Government following the August 16, 2015 incursion of Guatemalan Navy boats into Belizean waters, and the hostile, aggressive actions of the Guatemalan soldiers towards an excursion to Sarstoon Island by the Belize Territorial Volunteers (BTV), led by Wil Maheia, and the Northern Territorial Volunteers (NTV), led by Orlando De La Fuente, was not made available to the public, despite many appeals to do so.

Below is Belize’s diplomatic note to Guatemala, and following that, Guatemala’s response to Belize’s note.

Belize’s “extremely strong” protest note to Guatemala

Our Reference: FA/SORG/BM/01/15(17)
NOTE No. 551

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belize presents its compliments to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Guatemala and has the honour to refer to the incidents of Sunday 16th August 2015 during the visit of a few unarmed Belize civilians in the Sarstoon River by the Sarstoon Island.

As is well known, the Government of Belize is on record as not supporting the activities of the individuals and groups that visited the Sarstoon River last 16th August. Indeed, the Government of Belize actively tried to dissuade the Belize civilians from engaging in their planned activity. It was, therefore out of prudence and restraint and for the abundance of caution to avoid any possible confrontation or mishap with Guatemalan civilians or authorities that the Government of Belize withheld its armed forces from being in the immediate vicinity of the planned activity.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, having now seen pictures and videos from the event last 16th August in the Sarstoon, is very concerned by the behavior of the Guatemalan Armed Forces (GAF) who accosted the Belize civilian vessels and tried to impede their free navigation on the Sarstoon River; and by the fact that GAF elements led by a Vice Admiral further attempted to intimidate and harass unarmed Belizean civilians on the Belize side of the river.

As the Government of Guatemala was fully aware, the Government of Belize was committed to exercise every precaution to prevent any confrontations between the two countries. It is regrettable to note, however, that the Guatemala Armed Forces apparently did not receive the relevant instructions to exercise such restraint. The Government of Belize therefore protests the uninvited incursion of the Guatemalan armed forces into Belizean waters in the Sarstoon and for GAF behavior against unarmed Belize civilians and their vessels. Putting Belize civilian vessels and their passengers in danger by ramming Guatemala military vessels against them, obstructing free navigation and entering illegally into Belize waters for such purposes cannot be construed as neighbourly conduct on the part of the GAF.

The Government of Belize reaffirms its often repeated and long established position that in accordance with the 1859 Anglo-Guatemalan Treaty, the mid-channel of the Sarstoon River is the line constituting the boundary between Belize and Guatemala; that the river shall be equally free and open to vessels and boats of both countries, and that any islands found therein shall belong to that party on whose side of the main navigable channel they are situated. Nothing in law and practice has changed to this day, except that law and practice has consolidated this position.

Until such time as the Guatemalan claim to Belize is finally and permanently resolved, the Government of Belize reiterates it commitment to abide fully by the Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) between Belize and the Republic of Guatemala. Whereas these CBMs do not establish a specific regime for the Sarstoon, the Government of Belize recalls fundamental principles of behavior that govern the agreement on CBMs and that both Parties have an obligation to fulfill; namely, that as stated in Section D. paragraph 4 “Neither Party shall use force, or the threat of force, to pursue their positions with respect to the Territorial Differendum”; and at Section D. paragraph 18 that “Parties shall cooperate to avoid incidents on the ground conducive to tension between them”, as well as Section D. paragraph 24 that “The Parties agree to exercise caution and restraint in the treatment of all issues related to the Territorial Differendum”, among others.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belize remains committed to finding an early and definite resolution of any and all Guatemalan claims as agreed in the Special Agreement to Submit Guatemala’s Territorial, Insular and Maritime claims to the International Court of Justice, subject to approval by the will of the people in a referendum in both countries. In the meantime, the Government of Belize invites the Government of Guatemala, along with the Organization of American States, to engage in efforts to establish clear mechanisms of confidence building along the Sarstoon River to avoid further incidents and to improve on our neighbourly relations.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belize avails itself of this opportunity to renew to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Guatemala the assurances of its highest consideration.




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