When they exited the meeting, both Ministers Wilfred Elrington and Fernando Carrerra briefed us on what was discussed and late yesterday evening, the two countries issued a joint press release that provided specifics, referring to the meeting as successful and productive. Here is a rundown of the outcome of their congregation: They agreed that
It is necessary to build more bridges and not a wall between the two countries. Both agreed that Belize and Guatemala must be partners in development and security and that they have many challenges to overcome jointly. In this context the Foreign Ministers agreed to establish, as soon as possible, a Joint Commission of the two countries, in accordance with Article 20 of the Agreement on a Framework for Negotiations and Confidence Building Measures Between Belize and Guatemala, with a view contribute to the strengthening of the bilateral relations and the avoidance of any conflict. That Commission will be headed by the CEO of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belize and the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Guatemala, with the support of the OAS.
In addition, the Foreign Ministers instructed the CEO and the Vice Minister’
to define a Road Map for 2014, scheduling a series of meetings of various sectors, such as parliamentarians, the private sector, local authorities, academia, churches, cultural and educational sectors, among others. This, says the Ministers is perhaps the best approach to create a climate of confidence conducive to the fixing of a date to hold the necessary referenda to lead to the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
The Ministers also agreed to continue the dialogue to enable advances in the implementation of the Special Agreement of 2008. A consequent meeting of the two Ministered is scheduled for next June, However, prior to that, they will meet with the Secretary General of the OAS, H.E. Jose Miguel Insulza, on 24th January 2014, to coordinate the holding of a meeting of the Belize – Guatemala Group of Friends and to discuss other issues.