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Thursday, January 23, 2020
Home Letters If there is no guarantee, why risk taking us there?

If there is no guarantee, why risk taking us there?

Dear Editor,
Please allow me space in your valuable newspaper to APPEAL to my fellow Belizeans not to be swayed by party politics and follow the confusing decision of our Foreign Minister, Hon. Wilfred “Sedi” Elrington, and the Government of Belize for us to vote either to go, or not to go to the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

I have written on the subject of the Guatemalan claim before, and I insist on it asking the question, “What are we going to discuss at the ICJ?” Does Guatemala have any claim to all or part of our country? If we follow Minister Elrington, who signed the Agreement in December 2008 in Washington DC, we are not only going to be spending money we don’t have, but the agreement signed with Guatemala stipulates that “the decision of the Court will be binding”.

May I remind the Minister and Belizeans that the Minister, in a draft confidential document, stated, “The judges at the court are from different countries, with different interests,” and that “like in any court of law, there is no guarantee”.

Mr. Minister, if you believe there is no guarantee, why RISK taking us there?

Our Government, politicians and my fellow Belizeans profess that “The Belize Constitution is the Supreme Law”; if that is so, why then not ABIDE by the stipulations in our Constitution where in Schedule 1, it stipulates the following:

Definition of Belize

1. The territory of Belize comprises the mainland of Belize and all its associated islands and cayes within the area bounded by the frontiers with Guatemala and Mexico and the outer limit of the territorial sea of Belize described as follows:-

(a) the frontier with Guatemala is the line prescribed by the Treaty between the United Kingdom and
Guatemala signed on 30th April, 1859.

(b) The frontier with Mexico is the line prescribed by the Treaty between the United Kingdom and Mexico signed on 8th July, 1893.

In view of the signed and dated Legal Agreement as enshrined in our Constitution, I ask all Belizeans to vote NO to the ICJ. The United Nations General Assembly will be meeting shortly and I ask the Minister to propose a resolution there for adoption, demanding that Guatemala respect our Independence, which they said they did in 1991, and our sovereignty with territorial integrity.

Adolphus A. Rosales

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