Mexican Ambassador to Belize discusses issues with Belizean media

Today, January 20, 2016, the Belizean media met for a business lunch session with the Ambassador of Mexico to Belize, His Excellency,  vlcsnap-2016-01-21-09h32m14s431Carlos Quesnel Melendez, and his entourage. The Ambassador has been working in Belize for a little bit over a year . Today, the media asked about several pressing stories that have been in the media recently. Front and foremost was the request for an opinion from the Ambassador on vlcsnap-2016-01-21-09h32m33s539Belize’s handling of the Nanes case where David Nanes Schnitzer was released on bail by the Belizean court even though Mexico had requested his extradition.  Once given bail, Nanes disappeared. 

H.E. Carlos Quesnel Melendez – Mexican Ambassador to Belize

It was very regrettable that the judge did take the decision of the bail at that moment. And we do respect the internal laws of this country; we do respect the judicial decisions, so I’m not here as somebody, to, you know, to qualify that decision. What I can tell you, the least I can tell you is that after my experience in legal issues, that was a very, that was a very unusual law, bail, under the circumstances of Mr. Nanes Shnitzer. We certainly as I told you before, we did present our position, our official position by diplomatic channels. What I can tell you is that we have to see to the future. We have the guarantees of the Belizean government that this won’t happen again, but we have a legal framework, and I think that that tells us that we still have to work harder on cooperation in judicial matters.

“Once the extradition treaty was entered into force, so for international law that treaty was totally in force. I also as a lawyer understand that there is a system in Belize that obligates the Belizean government to incorporate that treaty into national law. I’m not going to go into details because that’s not part of our job. I just see the bilateral relationship and I would like us to mention that by international law standards that treaty was fully in force.”

Then there was the issue of  the Mexican free Zone businessman known as  El Espanol  who was known as a contrabandista  of cigarettes.  El Espanol was killed in Chetumal . The Mexican Ambassador commented on the contraband activities between Mexico and Belize.

H.E. Carlos Quesnel Melendez – Mexican Ambassador to Belize

“If we go one with the signature of the Partial Scope Free Trade Agreement that will bring much benefits in this particular area So that it will avoid contraband of, well you mentioned cigarettes, and many other products. Ah, you know there is also contraband, of, for example, of cattle and if we open the market in the sectors that are convenient for both countries I am sure that contraband will be automatically decreased between both countries.”

The Ambassador also addressed the recent reports of the Belizean market being flooded with Mexican carrots, resulting in the rotting of carrots in the Belizean farm fields.  Mexican Ambassador to Belize, Carlos Melendez.

H.E. Carlos Quesnel Melendez – Mexican Ambassador to Belize

“We have seen last year’s statistics, and we have not seen a change of pattern in the carrots exports to Belize from Mexico, so there has been a quota, and this, this amount of carrots we exported to Belize are the same as last year. So I don’t know if it really is the Mexican carrot that is affecting the local market in Belize.”

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