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Minister Wilfred Elrington hosted by OAS Permanent Council

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Today, Belize’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington, along with Guatemala’s Foreign Minister Sandra Jovel, was welcomed by the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States for a Special Meeting. The meeting was held in Washington DC and it focused on the Belize/Guatemala dispute. Minister Elrington was first to address the Permanent Representatives of the OAS.

WILFRED ELRINGTON, MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS

“The relationship between Belize and Guatemala is all but harmonious. Guatemala is resolved that it should be dealt with at the ICJ. Belize is resolved that it should be dealt with at the ICJ at the governmental level and this has been the case form 2008. The outstanding issue to date then is for us to continue to strengthen and beef up our own office for preparation of the Education Campaign and we have been working acidulously on that. The limitations of course are primarily that of resource both in terms of personnel and both in terms of finance but we have reached out far and near for assistance in that regard. We are doing our best to incorporate and include every able bodied person to help us in this task. We remain always mindful of the pitfalls that exist when one is dealing with referendum. Very difficult to know what the outcome is and therefore we can’t leave anything to chance and so we are resolved to do all in our power to make sure that like our governments, the populace of both our countries, see the importance, the absolute imperative of having this matter resolved at the International Court of Justice. I think it’s an eminently doable job and I think that that job would be much easier with the unstinting support of our allies and friends in the region.”

In her remarks, Jovel expressed her Government’s willingness to take Guatemala’s claim to the International Court of Justice. Countries such as Mexico, Costa Rica, Peru, Honduras and Ecuador supported the talks.

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