The World Archaeological Congress, CWA, is a non-governmental, not-for-profit organization whose aim is to promote interest in the past in all countries, encourage the development of regionally-based histories and foster international academic interaction.
On August 30th that organization sent a letter addressed to Prime Minister Dean Barrow question the incident that occurred in the Village of Santa Cruz in the Toledo District on Saturday June 20th when Rupert Miles was tied and dragged through the village since the leaders of the community claimed that he built a house on the archaeological site of Uxbenka, and caused damage to the sacred site.
According to the release and we quote “the destruction and rampant looting of Mayan sites have been happening across Belize, a country which depends heavily on the tourism brought by ancestral Maya archaeology, hence the reason the government should ensure that people are punished for causing damage to these treasures” end quote.
CWA also states that its membership recognizes the difficulties posed by heritage management for Belize and they advocate for the priority of human rights in all questions of heritage. In Belize, says the release, the courts have consistently found that the Maya and Q’eqchi’ people of Belize have rights to control the use of their communities and their land.
In the release the World Archaeological Congress urges the government of Belize to recognize these rights and support the cultural property rights of all people.
Prime Minister Dean Barrow is yet to reply to the letter.
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