US government gave money to UNIBAM, but Ambassador “could not say how much
H.E. Carlos Moreno, the recently installed Ambassador of the US to Belize, hosted a media roundtable at the US Embassy in Belmopan this morning. During that session, Moreno answered questions from the media on a range of topics, including the role of the US in helping Belize protect its territory from illegal incursions by Guatemalans, the threat of an Ebola outbreak in the Americas after the US flew home two patients with the deadly communicable virus for treatment this month, and bilateral efforts to help stave off the wave of violent crimes in Belize.
Ambassador Moreno said that he had just met this week with officials of the Organization of American States (OAS), which has helped to monitor activities on the Belize-Guatemala border, and he said that the information provided to him about the incursions is “very startling.” Moreno said that he had also been encouraged to do a fly-over to see the degree of degradation on “the disputed border.”
With that said, we asked the Ambassador to clarify the position on the border between Belize and Guatemala, as defined in the Belize Constitution, and he told us that while the US cannot take a position for either Belize or Guatemala, the US does support the call for the territorial differendum to be taken to the International Court of Justice.
We also asked the Ambassador questions about his stance on homosexuality and gay marriage. Moreno said that LGBT rights are a subset of rights that are accorded to everyone. He confirmed that the US Government had given grants to the LGBT activist group in Belize, UNIBAM.
In our questions submitted a week before this morning’s roundtable, based on a request from the Embassy, we asked the Embassy to indicate exactly how much funds had been granted to UNIBAM; however, when we posed that question at this morning’s roundtable, the Ambassador told us that he did not have the information.
“There is no LGBT agenda by the US Government,” Moreno told the media.