Over $400,000 invested by US Embassy into Belize Coast Guard

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Coast Guard Donation

Since the start of the year, there have been numerous cases of piracy, and the Belize Police Department as well as the Belize Coast Guard have been working tirelessly to bring those responsible to justice and to prevent other cases of piracy. It is no secret, however, that with limited resources these law enforcement entities also have very limited reach, especially on the sea. That is why when a donation of items amounting approximately $400,000 was given to the Belize Coast Guard by the United States Government, our country’s crime fighting capabilities increased significantly.
The handover of six onboard engines and night vision goggles was done on Thursday, March 25 from the US Embassy to the naval arm of the Ministry of National Defense and Border Security, the Coast Guard, as it continues in its efforts to fight crime. Keith Gilges, Chargé d’affaires of the U.S. Embassy in Belize, says that this donation comes through the US Government’s Central American Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) and is just one of the many donations which have taken place over the years, amounting to more than USD $43 million. While it is a donation, Gilges says that the US Government considers it more of an investment, a contribution toward the stabilization and security of Belize’s borders and seas.
Fighting piracy has become less of a national issue and more of a transnational one, seeing that many of these pirates from southern areas of Belize are working with persons from Honduras and other countries in the region. As a result, they are well-organized, resourced, innovative, and adaptive, forcing our lawmen to be just as well-resourced and adaptive in their crime fighting strategies. With the donation, the Coast Guard is now better equipped to carry out its mandate of maritime safety and security and increases its capacity to function at sea leading to overall citizen security.