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Prime Minister John Brice�o and Hon. Eamon Courtenay, Minister of Foreign Affairs & Foreign Trade discuss Summit of the Americas & PM's upcoming official visits representing Caricom and Belize.

Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 84,400
Marty Offline OP
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PM Gives Overview Of Summit Of The Americas

And before he hits the road tomorrow - the Prime Minister spent last week in Los Angeles at the ninth Summit of the Americas.

The event was widely viewed as a success mainly for the host which got twenty countries - Belize included - to sign unto a migration pact.

But the PM said even though the event started with a lot of talk - Belize was able to have productive meetings in the margins:

Hon. John Briceno, Prime Minister
"The summit began much like COP26 in Glascow with a lot of talk and little real commitment to action, but we were able to hold several significant side meetings as well as ensure that the outcome documents of the summit represented our views and interest. But I wish to highlight the meeting I chaired on behalf of Caricom along with the President of the Dominican Republic, President Joe Biden and Vice President Harris. In this meeting we had a frank exchange of views and we expressed to the US our concerns that the partnership between the region and the US needs urgent attention. From this exchange with President Biden and Vice President Harris 3 committees were formed to address food security, energy security and access to concessionary financing. During the summit I held a number of bilateral meetings including one with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the new President of Costa Rica, Rodrigo Chaves Robles, the President of the Dominican Republic, Luis Abinader and others."

Jules Vasquez
"It would seem as though you were publicly chastising the leader of the free world when you were standing only 20 feet away from him on his lectern."

Hon. John Briceno, Prime Minister
"No, I was not publicly chastising the President. I need to point out first that it was publicly known what was Caricom's position and I went there to speak as the chairman of Caricom and at the same time for Belize. Belize has been very clear that the Summit of the Americas should be inclusive."

Jules Vasquez
"Is this something that concerns you Belize may suffer some type of low key retaliation for?"

Hon. John Briceno, Prime Minister
"I don't think so. I simply don't think that will happen. We continue to have a good relationship with the United States."

Jules Vasquez
"I know that certainly you all do not rant Shyne Barrow as any purveyor of foreign affairs or diplomacy of any significance, but he had said that you are standing up for dictatorships. I only mentioned it in the context that I see the US Embassy posted a short while ago that their charge d affaires met with the opposition leader "to exchange views on concerning global and regional trends of democratic backsliding and human rights violations as well as pathways forward to continuing to build democracy and protect freedom." We know that these are code words for Venezuela and Cuba and Nicaragua. Is it a concern on yours that you all are now being associated with leftist regimes or what the United States says are authoritarian regimes?"

Hon. John Briceno, Prime Minister

Jules Vasquez
"And so how do you respond to Shyne Barrow's remarks that you are in fact down with dictatorships?"

Hon. John Briceno, Prime Minister
"Foreign Minister, you want to answer that."

Hon. Eamon Courtenay, Minister of Foreign Affairs
"I would have thought that when one gets a head injury, one would seek medical attention before speaking in public. By the way I will be having lunch with the charge tomorrow. I hope she will take a picture with me and post it."

Channel 7

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