One of the highlights of this year that has been debated on the media, in public and on the social media is the issue of the construction of a Forward Operating Base on the Sarstoon Island in southern Belize. Prime Minister Barrow, in his Independence Day speech, assured the Belizean people that the Forward Operating Base will be constructed. He did add, however that the preservation of the country’s sovereignty must be left to the Belize Defense Force.
“Of course, the BDF will also build the Forward Operating Base on the north bank of the Sarstoon River and it will do so in a continuing exercise of Belizean sovereignty in that area. This is a sovereignty that Government and all our security forces, as a matter of first principle and existential duty, will always wholly maintain. But we do not need civilians, however well-intentioned, to complicate matters. In flashpoint situations, preservation of the sovereignty and security equation must be left to our trained, professional, and highly skilled military; a military that has time and again demonstrated its ability to take care of business and perform at a level out of all proportion to its small size even with drilling as you saw this morning with respect to that parade.”