Minister Of Home Affairs speaks on Yemeri Grove Land Issue
Yesterday, several rural communities in the Toledo District banded together to speak about what they say is encroachment taking place in non-Mayan villages. The group, led by leaders of Yemeri Grove, believes that the ICJ ruling on Customary Mayan Land Rights has disrupted the unity among several communities. The land disputes between the Creole and Mayan communities have boiled over on previous occasions and resulted in physical altercations. GOB had attempted to strike a temporary border agreement between Yemeri Grove and Laguna but was unsuccessful. Minister of Home Affairs Kareem Musa says the government continues talks with both communities and is putting all hands on deck to solve the issue.
Kareem Musa, Minister of Home Affairs: “At this time, we do not have any plans as such. We have formed a joint rapid response team, if you want to call it that, with the Ministry of Lands and with the Ministry of Indigenous Peoples Affairs whereby the police is engaged on a regular basis, constant updates, and then to intervene in a very quick way whenever there are flare-ups. We are paying special attention. The police department down south in the Toledo district is paying special attention to this particular issue that has arisen between the two groups, the two villages, and so we’re keeping a very close eye on it. And like I said, whenever an issue arises, this quick response team represented by all ministries will intervene.”