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Guatemala will respect ICJ’s decision, says Former Foreign Affairs Minister Carlos Morales

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Posted: Monday, December 17, 2018. 7:28 pm CST.

By BBN Staff:On April 10, 2019, Belizeans will be asked to vote in favor of or against taking Guatemala’s long standing claim on Belize’s territory to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) for a final settlement.

This year, Guatemala held its national referendum where 26% of its electorate turned out and 96% of them votes ‘Yes’ to taking the claim to the court.

But will Belizeans do the same? There are many questions that Belizeans are asking and one prominent question remains, would Guatemala respect the ruling at the ICJ if Belizeans decide to vote ‘Yes’.

Belizean journalists are in Guatemala city and today asked Former Foreign Affairs Minister, Carlos Morales. “It is important to understand the commitment. This is why it is important to go to the International Court of Justice because what the International Court of Justice defines is going to be the law for both countries. Guatemala is respecting the international community. Guatemala respect the international border and we will respect the decision that will be taken at the ICJ. You can be sure about it….I can assure you that Guatemala will respect any decision that the ICJ will give to both countries. We respect the law and this is very important for us,” he told the Belizean press.

Morales also shared that in 2007, while Lisa Shoman was Belize’s Foreign Minister, and Guatemala’s Foreign Minister was Gert Rosenthal, both verbally agreed at a meeting in Washington to finally take the dispute to the ICJ. He added that the Special Agreement was signed one year later by Belize’s current Foreign Minister, Wilfred Elrington and Guatemala’s Foreign Minister at the time, Haroldo Rodas.

 

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