Controversy / General / Weekend News

BTV to Sarstoon, despite warning

By Benjamin Flowers, Staff Reporter
Despite several warnings from the Government of Belize, the Belize Territorial Volunteers (BTV) set out Sunday morning for Sarstoon Island.
The Volunteers cast off from Barranco Village around 9 a.m., bearing Belizean flags symbolic of our nation’s sovereignty over this land. They are accompanied, as announced this week, by Senator Lisa Shoman.
The BTV’s excursion is in commemoration of the 1859 Treaty between Great Britain and Guatemala, which established Belize’s borders, much of which is now subject to Guatemala’s unfounded claim.
GOB issued several releases this week, emphasizing that it feels the BTVC’s mission is ill-advised and should have been cancelled. Minister of National
Security, John Saldivar, also chimed in, both to the media and on social media, to register his disapproval, but said that his ministry will do what it can to avoid any incidents.
BTV leader Will Maheia told the Reporter that the trip was necessary to emphasize to Belizeans and the world that Belize belongs to Belizeans.
“We are going in solidarity for Belize. This is our country and our people should not be afraid to go anywhere in their own country”, Maheia said.
Orlando de la Fuente of the northern volunteers resonated with Maheia’s statement, pointing out that since the Sarstoon is recognized Belizean territory, there should be no reason to fear venturing into Guatemala.
The excursion is expected to last up until late afternoon. 

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