Country Report Belize October 1996 Main report

Political scene: Gov't protests to the USA over diplomat's remarks

The Belizean government sent a protest note to the US State Department in July following remarks made in a magazine interview by the deputy chief of mission at the US embassy, Gerard Gallucci, who was ending his tour of duty in Belize. Mr Gallucci, who was succeeded in August by Frank Parker, criticised Belize for an international banking law which he said facilitated money-laundering, and for certain judicial practices which suggested that drug interdiction was not a government priority. He described Belize as "uncontrolled territory" through which large amounts of cocaine passed, and also expressed concern about illegal immigration to the USA via Belize, and the trade in stolen US vehicles. The protest note said that Mr Gallucci's claims were without any shred of proof.

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