Belize, Guatemala indigenous people cooperate on reducing cross-border incursions
Saturday, June 13th, 2015: BMG: Indigenous Maya leaders from Belize and Guatemala met last week in Poptun, Peten, Guatemala, to discuss collaboration on decreasing the number of cross-border incursions and subsequent destruction of natural resources in the Chiquibul-Maya Mountains which straddle both countries.
The indigenous groups aim to unite the efforts of the communities living along the border to address the environmental, social and economic problems underlying the incursions.
Participating organizations from Belize included the Toledo Alcaldes Association (TAA) and Friends for Conservation and Development (FCD), co-managers of the Chiquibul protected areas.
The representatives of the communities developed a draft declaration with requests and recommendations, primarily asking both governments to pay greater attention to border communities and addressing their issues, which will help reduce and prevent armed encounters between illegal entrants and the military of both countries assigned to protect the forests.
The draft declaration, when finalized, is to be presented to the Governments of Belize and Guatemala.
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