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UDP demands that Guatemala return Belizean flags stolen from Sarstoon Island; Calls on GOB to step up

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Posted: Tuesday, September 20, 2022. 6:50 pm CST.

By Benjamin Flowers: The United Democratic Party is calling on the Government of Belize to demand the immediate return of Belizean flags taken from members of the Belize Territorial Volunteers (BTV) by members of the Guatemalan Armed Forces (GAF) over the weekend.

The UDP issued a statement this afternoon, stressing that, while in government, the party had installed a forward operating base for the Belize Defense Force to ensure that Belizeans could navigate the area, as well as deter transnational illegal activity and assert ownership over our entire territory.

“We remember an Eamon Courtenay who was stern and boisterous in his condemnation of the GAF while in Opposition but is suddenly meek and mild as Foreign Minister in the face of Guatemalan aggression. We call on the Government of Belize to officially condemn the actions of the Guatemalan Armed Forces and to ensure the return of the Belizean Flags,” the UDP said.

BTV leader Wil Maheia reported that on Sunday, September 18, the group had gone to place the flags on Sarstoon Island in the Toledo district, as part of an annual activity displaying national pride. The flags were later stolen by GAF members who came into Belizean waters to have them removed.

The Ministry of National Defence and Border Security issued a statement following the incident, assuring the public that the joint deployment continues to conduct regular patrols from Barranco Village to Sarstoon Island, and remains vigilant to ensure the territorial integrity and national sovereignty of Belize.

 

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