The Belize Territorial Volunteers (BTV) has responded to a press release issued by the OAS on March 7, 2015. In the release, the OAS states that they carried out a verification in the area of Jalacte/Santa Cruz and concluded that some of the coconut trees planted by the NGO Belize Territorial Volunteers were found to be in Guatemalan territory. The BTV categorically denies the findings of the OAS and says in its press release that the organization
“ further invites the OAS/Adjacency Zone Office, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to map the GPS coordinates of the coconut trees in question. Our GPS coordinates confirm that the trees are on the Belize side of the border”. The release also says that
“the OAS has sat quietly and condoned the incursions of Guatemalans into Belize for the purposes of deforestation by logging, Xate harvesting, cattle farms, and corn fields. No effort has been made by the OAS to issue a similar public statement that would confirm the GPS coordinates of these incursions by Guatemalans. This is further proof of the OAS’s impartiality with respect to the work it promotes within the context of the Guatemalan claim over Belize. “
The release ends with an invitation to the Belize and Guatemala media, and the OAS/Adjacency Zone Office to the border at Jalacte/Santa Cruz on March 22, 2015 to jointly read the GPS coordinates of the coconut trees planted by the BTV.