A group called Artists for Peace and Common Sense is outraged over the Government of Belize accepting an invitation from the Israelis to train Belize’s police officers. The group received one hundred and seventy signatures from persons who also condemn the move by the Government of Belize. Love News spoke with Yasser Musa, who explains why they strongly oppose such a move.
Yasser Musa – Artist: The way Israel treats and has treated its own neighbors, the Palestinian people has been outrageous Human Rights violation rights for decades. They are celebrating 70 years of independence but also the Palestinians are acknowledging 70 years of what they call Nakba because from 1948 700,000 of them were chased from hundreds of their villages out of their own homeland but this is not just an International outlook that we had this is National view we are taking because Israel has had a strong Military strong collaboration with the Government of Guatemala from 1979 until now and what they are doing right now in the Sarstoon as an example is Militarizing, occupying, taking space and then saying this is our space and this is not by accident, that is by design so now we are accepting the same kind of security forces into our security forces and that is an inherent contradiction and that should be complete condemned and we are condemning that and we want the government to reverse that immediately.
Love News also spoke with artists Gilvano Swasey and Katie Usher who shared why they also stand in opposition.
Gilvano Swasey: If you look at the history of where Israel has been into different parts of the world to do this training. Their tactics as some who tried to question our motive for this has says that Israel is great in dealing with terrorism because they live in a place where terrorism is very strong so are you telling us that our people In Belize that they are coming train are going to be dealing with terrorist, are you telling us our community is filled with terrorist, do you understand. It’s the tactics that you are using, it’s the people you are hiring to do these training.
Katie Usher, Artist: Every time I look on the Tv is see people beat up, punch up all kind of thing because GSU is on them or somebody pull them off the bike. There is no need for military of any other to come and train our Police, we do not need militarization of the Police. What we need is community policing, oh why Johnny isn’t in school, how much time I hear Ms. I could please get a shilling? No you can’t get a shilling, you need to go to school because you are preparing this child for a cycle of being disenfranchised, lacking access and everything. We need to get kids back in school , we do not need to militarize our Police.
Today, the National Trade Union of Belize issued a press release calling on the Government of Belize to reject the offer. Furthermore, the release said that the Government of Belize should not reveal any of Belize’s intelligence and national security information to Israel since there is a likelihood of it being passed on to Guatemala.