Love News has been reliably informed that a patrol boat belonging to SATIIM was blocked from conducting their routine patrols on the Sarstoon River recently. According to our source, the vessel was sent back upon their arrival at the Forward Operating Base and subsequent to that, two boats belonging to the Guatemala Armed Forces moved in at the mouth of the Sarstoon. Prime Minister Barrow commented on this incident.
“The rationale would be simple; the regulation in force which prohibits civilians from going to the Sarstoon without lawful authority. Presumably if the SATIIM people were denied access to the Sarstoon by the BDF it is because they did not in the context of the regulation have the lawful permission.”
Senator Eamon Courtenay also addressed the Prime Minister’s response to this question saying that he has been reliably informed that SATIIM had requested permission.
“Information coming to me directly is that SATIIM was stopped by the Belize Defense Force that’s the first point. Secondly I am aware that SATIIM had applied directly to CEO Lovell for permission to go into the Sarstoon so I am very surprised that they were stopped by the BDF. Now listening to the Prime Minister’s Press Conference on Tuesday I would have thought that SATIIM fell into one of the groups that would be allowed in so that is one of the issues that we will be seeking clarification in.”
About one month ago, on April 6, SATIIM’s Executive Director, Froyla Salam had confirmed to Love News that they were approached by the Guatemalan Armed Forces and told of a new protocol in place whereby they were to attain permission from Guatemala to access the Sarstoon. Love News will follow this story and bring you more details in our evening news.