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Saturday April 30th 2016 marked the 157th anniversary of the treaty that was signed between the governments of the United Kingdom and the republic of Guatemala in the year 1859. The main purpose of signing the treaty was to distinguish the border that lies between Belize and its neighboring country Guatemala.

In an effort to commemorate this significant and important day, the Northern Territorial Volunteers traveled to the Garbutt Falls Border Monument located in Benque Viejo where a short ceremony was held to honor the validation of the agreement. The leader of the Northern Territorial Volunteers, Giovanni De la Fuente, was quite satisfied with the support that the NTV received, not only from civilians but also from the members of the Belize Police Force who were out there to ensure the safety of all Belizeans that were present for the trip.

Screen_Shot_2016-05-03_at_8.29.27_PMGiovanni De la Fuente – Leader, Northern Territorial Volunteers 

“A group Belizeans departed from Orange Walk April 30th at 7am in the morning and we made our way over to San Ignacio where we linked up with a group over from San Ignacio and together we went to the Benque border where we were pleasantly surprised to meet member of the Belize police force that came out and accompanied us to the Garbutt Falls border monument stayed with us until after the ceremony and until everybody was safely out and so we had a successful trip and I think between 45 and 60 Belizeans showed up and we had our ceremony and we had children reading their poems and all in all it was a successful trip.”

De la Fuente also gave us his input as it pertains to the restriction that was placed by the government concerning the movement on the Belize side of the Sarstoon River.

Giovanni De la Fuente – Leader, NTV

“The new Law that was passed by the government as far as I know it is temporary, is only for one month and one week has almost gone so we got three weeks and few days left and the Prime Minister had indicated that he will not renew it for another month so this new law is indeed very straight and while there is danger and different things that you need to consider, one of the big things that we need to consider is and one of the things we need to ask ourselves is to ask the government what is the difference between Sarstoon and Garbutt Fall, what is the different between Sarstoon and Chiquibul, the police shoed up with us as we went to Garbutt Falls and Belize exerted its sovereignty on that day but it seems to me that the government of Belize isn’t exerting itself its sovereignty as it should in Sarstoon, of course the Prime Minister has said it is only for a month but three weeks and some days left and so Belizeans the Prime Minister has said he will not renew this and well after this month is up we will see what happens but as Belizeans and as a country I believe we need to make a stand and show our presence at the Sarstoon.”

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