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Belize~ Should we take advantage and now say ‘Yes to ICJ?’

Posted: Tuesday, January 15, 2019. 10:24 am CST.

The views expressed in this article are those of the writer and not necessarily those of Breaking Belize News.

This article was written by Richard Harrison, Belizean investor in production and services businesses in Belize. He holds a Master’s in Business Administration degree from Lancaster University.

By Richard Harrison: Neighbouring Guatemala, in the last few days, is witnessing a Constitutional crisis develop over the decision by President Morales to evict the UN CICIG anti-corruption body from the country…nine months before the terms of the agreement was to expire.

On Tuesday night the Constitutional Court suspended the Presidents decision, triggering a stand off.

Can Guatemala take these steps on its own? what hand does the great powers of the USA have in all this? are there geo-political implications working for or against Guatemala’s and Belize’s best interest?

Does this momentum improve the favourable outlook for Belize in such a way as to tip the scale in favour of Belizeans voting “yes to ICJ”?

Belize certainly must take into account that Guatemala is currently a very unstable country….incapable of making difinitive long-term comprehensive consensual agreements.

“If the Guatemalan government is unwilling to comply with international law, it cannot be considered a trustworthy member of the international community, trade partner or destination for foreign direct investment.

There are also broader issues at stake for the UN. A corrupt, weakened government from a small Central American nation must not be allowed to disregard international agreements and “defeat” the UN. This would set a dangerous precedent and it must be avoided so as to preserve the legitimacy of the international legal system.” ~ Alfredo Ortega Franco for Al Jazeera

Perhaps Belize should consider postponing or ending the ICJ referendum process? and start preparations to protect Belize in the event Guatemala drifts further from international law and norms…? such events would trigger widespread exodus of people from Guatemala….potentially flooding Belize….and possibly descend into widespread civil conflict, that could rapidly spread to Honduras, El Salvador and Nicaragua.

The importance of British presence in Belize for regional security is long established and recognized…and Belize should perhaps consider advancing a mechanism through SICA for the British to remain in Belize indefinitely, as part of a long-term comprehensive security arrangement for Belize and the wider region…as a reasonable balance of US interests (itself currently unstable)….and our own.


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