Belize-Guatemala Border Tensions Put Needed Cooperation at Risk

Guatemalan Defense Minister Gen. Williams Mansilla gives a press conference following the death of a 13-year-old boy in a shooting incident on the Belizean border, Guatemala City, April 23, 2016 (AP photo by Moises Castillo).
Guatemalan Defense Minister Gen. Williams Mansilla gives a press conference following the death of a 13-year-old boy in a shooting incident on the Belizean border, Guatemala City, April 23, 2016 (AP photo by Moises Castillo).

Border tensions between Belize and Guatemala flared back up this weekend when Belizean soldiers shot and injured a Guatemalan man who allegedly threatened them with a machete after he was found illegally prospecting for gold on Belize’s side of the contested border. In an email interview, Margath Walker, an assistant professor at the University of Louisville, discussed the border dispute between Belize and Guatemala. WPR: What is the history behind the contested border between Belize and Guatemala, and what has caused the recent border tensions? Margath Walker: The territorial dispute between Guatemala and Belize dates back more than 150 years. […]

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