noimageThe 8th Summit of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Heads of State and Government which was held in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea lasted for a period of two days under the theme “Repositioning the ACP Group to Respond to Challenges of the Sustainable Development’.

After the Summit concluded yesterday, the representatives agreed on a Declaration which was based on a variation of matters associated with the responsibilities and future of the ACP.

Paragraph 18 of the Declaration contained a strong proclamation of support in favor of our country, Belize, as it relates to the topic of the Guatemalan claim. It indicated that protocols must be established with regards to the adjacency zone for the benefit of both parties.

Paragraph 18 stated, and we quote “Recalling the Resolution at the 103rd Session of the ACP Council of Ministers, we strongly reaffirm unequivocal support for Belize’s sovereignty and territorial integrity in relation to on-going tensions along the border of Belize caused by the Republic of Guatemala’s persistent territorial claims. We call on the Government of the Republic of Guatemala to respect the borders of Belize as established in the 1859 Treaty, and move with urgency to agree on protocols for the use of the Sarstoon River on the southern border of Belize. We urge both governments to refrain from the threat or use of force, to respect international agreements, and to move with expedition to hold national referenda with the goal of submitting all Guatemala's claims to the International Court of Justice for final resolution.

We renew our call on the international community, including the European Union, to support the efforts of Belize and the Republic of Guatemala to seek a peaceful, final and just resolution to Guatemala’s claims, and in particular to support the facilitation work of the Organization of American States through its Office in the Adjacency Zone”. End of quote.

Present at the two days Summit to represent Belize were Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon. Wilfred Elrington and H.E. Dylan Vernon, Ambassador to the European Union.

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