Posted: Monday, April 15, 2019. 7:02 pm CST.
By BBN Staff: The Ministry of National Security has issued a statement condemning the actions of the Guatemalan armed forces in an incident today where they intercepted members of the Belize Coast Guard as they were traversing up the Sarstoon River.
The Ministry says that it is aware of the incident involving a group of individuals led by Wil Maheia of the Belize Territorial Volunteers (BTV).
The visitors reported to the security forces at the Sarstoon Forward Operating Base (FOB) and were being escorted through the northern channel of the Sarstoon River when they were intercepted by three Guatemalan vessels that blocked their passage through the river. After making several attempts to outmaneuver the Guatemalan Armed Forces (GAF) vessels to no avail, the visitors and escorts retracted from their attempts.
Following that incident, the security forces at the Sarstoon FOB conducted a routine patrol around Sarstoon Island and had no resistance from the GAF.
The Ministry notes that the Guatemalans seemed to have been aware that Mejia was visiting the area and had boosted its resources to interfere in order to deliberately block his entrance.
This incident has been reported to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and a strong protest is being lodged to condemn the actions of the GAF.
The Government of Belize notes that this incident marks a high level of interference by the Guatemalans and is discussing an adequate diplomatic response.
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