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Minister Elrington responds to PUP’s concerns

Foreign Affairs Minister Wilfred Elrington has responded to criticisms made by the People’s United Party with regards to an interview he did which aired last week. As we said yesterday, in a portion of an interview aired on News 5, Elrington said he was informed by Ambassador Alexis Rosado that the constitution in Guatemala provides for them to go to a second referendum in order to ratify the position of the International Court of Justice. In a statement clarifying his statements, Minister Elrington said that quote, “clips used in Channel 5’s report gave the mistaken impression that Minister Elrington was stating that it is his or Ambassador H.E. Alexis Rosado’s own view that after the International Court of Justice rules on a decision the “constitution of Guatemala provides for them [Guatemala] to then go to a referendum too, as it were, ratify that position of the court”. End of quote. According to Elrington, what he was explaining was his understanding of the basis of the constitutional challenge in Guatemala; not his personal views or that of Ambassador Rosado. The legal challenge was dismissed by the Guatemala court last week Friday. If both countries decided to take the dispute to the ICJ, there can be no question of another referendum on the Court’s ruling. This is stipulated under Article Five of the Special Agreement which states that Belize and Guatemala agree to accept the decision of the Court as final and binding. Guatemala will hold its referendum on Sunday, April 15.