Yesterday we told you about SATIM’s encounter with Guatemalan Navy Boats on the Sarstoon. The GAF told the SATIM team tht they were no longer allowed on the SArstoon without permission from them. Needless to say, SATIM was taken aback by this new development and sent out letters to Belizean authorities demanding an explanation of this apparently new procedure for travelling in Belizean waters. Today, tThe Association of Protected Areas Management Organizations (APAMO), in solidarity with its member organization (SATIIM), issued a statement saying it   …condemns the aggressive behaviour of the Guatemalan Armed Forces towards community members on a monitoring patrol led by SATIIM in Belizean territory. On a daily basis, our Non-Government and Community-Based Organizations are undertaking the challenging work of protecting Belize’s natural resources within and outside of protected areas, on behalf and for the government and people of Belize. With the increasing sensitivity of the bi-national relations between Belize and Guatemala, these organizations operating in protected areas near the border need the support of the relevant Government agencies to ensure the deterrence of the ongoing pillaging of our natural resources by non-Belizeans. As is the case with most protected areas in Belize, the only management presence comes from our co-managers and we proudly salute SATIIM for its dedicated work in protecting the Sarstoon Temash National Park with the increased risks and limited resources; and despite being denied renewal of its co-management agreement with the Government in 2013.” APAMO ends the release by saying that they are, however, e pleased that with the new administration in the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, Forestry, Environment, and Sustainable Development (MAFFESD), they  are making major strides in renewing and strengthening collaboration with the Government. vlcsnap-2016-04-08-11h18m31s245 vlcsnap-2016-04-08-11h18m35s019 vlcsnap-2016-04-08-11h18m40s429

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