Protests and Looting in Belize City

Old Apr 21st, 2005, 08:55 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 816
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Protests and Looting in Belize City

There were street protests and some looting in Belize City Wednesday afternoon, April 20, as students demonstrated against the current Belize government.

Students from the University of Belize's campus in Belize City, along with students from local high schools and others, took to the streets protesting the People's United Party government actions. Later in the evening, the protests expanded to the Belcan Bridge area north of downtown.

Later in the afternoon and evening, a number of stores in the downtown area were broken into and looted, and power was off in parts of Belize City. Observers say most of the looting was by criminals, including gang members, in Belize City, which has a reputation as a high-crime area.

The looting followed weeks of work stoppages, strikes and, most recently, the alleged sabotage of Belize's telecommunication system, which knocked out telephone and internet service to most of Belize during the past five days. The opposition United Democratic Party earlier in a press conference had called for civil disobediance, and some PUP supporters say the UDP was behind the street protests.

Although some airline flights into Belize have been delayed or cancelled -- US Airways cancelled its flights to and from Belize today -- so far the tourist areas of Ambergris Caye, Caye Caulker, Placencia and elsewhere have not been affected, except that due to the telephone outage most businesses have not been able to get credit cards authorized and ATMs have been down, leaving some tourists without travel funds.

No serious injuries or deaths were reported. Phone and dial-up internet service has been restored in part of the country.

The PUP government has issued an appeal for calm.

Prime Minister Said Musa and his PUP government have been under increasing pressure since late January in the face of large budget defiicts, dramatically increasing national debt, charges of corruption and fiscal mismanagement, a downgrade of the country's credit rating, and an international dispute over the ownership of Belize Telecommunications, Ltd.

--Lan Sluder
www.belizefirst.com
LanSluder is offline  
Old Apr 21st, 2005, 08:56 AM
  #2  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 816
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I have confirmed that US Air has cancelled flights to and from Belize today. (Flight 319 BZE-Charlotte). I can't confirm what it plans to do tomorrow. I also don't know what AA, CO, DL and TACA plan.

This is the statement that US Air has released:

"The flight is cancelled because of conditions affecting the airport terminal at Belize City Bze, BELIZE. Customers will be re-accommodated. For information about your party please contact US Airways Reservations at (800) 428-4322."

Coincidentally, my nephew -- based on my tales of Belize over the years -- was flying into Belize tomorrow for his first visit.

--Lan Sluder
LanSluder is offline  
Old Apr 21st, 2005, 10:13 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 250
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Lan,
Thanks for the update. I couldn't find much about this news on the internet. As of 2pm, the British Embassy has updated their travel page http://www.fco.gov.uk/servlet/Front?...=1031850318248, but the US Embassay has not http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_p.../cis_1055.html.

American cancelled today's flight, but has not yet made any changes to Friday or Saturday flights.

Hope you, Katie, and the all of Belize stay safe.
Rumrita1 is offline  
Old Apr 21st, 2005, 10:58 AM
  #4  
mlw
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 136
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I just called US Air and reached a reservationist. We are supposed to fly out of Charlotte tomorrow (the 22nd) I asked about the status of flights into Belize, and he said he knew today was cancelled but did not know about tomorrow, and to call the airline in the morning. I was really looking forward to my first trip to Belize (Ambergris Caye)Now I am wondering if I get there, can I get back home????
mlw is offline  
Old Apr 21st, 2005, 11:31 AM
  #5  
Pausanias
Guest
 
Posts: n/a
Sorry, but not surprised to hear this. There were peaceful demonstrations in Belmopan when I was in Belize last month. Said Musa seemed pretty unpopular with the people I spoke with. He is alleged to have "lent" public funds to business associates.

Let's just hope no one gets hurt.
 
Old Apr 21st, 2005, 03:24 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,049
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I was downtown yesterday, this morning and afternoon. Its calm. Teachers were marching to the Police station. Most of the cops were once their students. I think we'll have some sort of repeat tonight. I wouldn't want to have dinner downtown tonight or be one of the businesses perceived to have benefited at the expense of the people. Theres many good, smart and sincere people involved in the actions and some not so of course. But relatively calm and even the taxi drivers were polite..
Katie_Valk is offline  
Old Apr 21st, 2005, 03:35 PM
  #7  
bml
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 4
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
We just got back from AC on Tues... we didn't have any issues with our flights out, but sounds like that is only in the past day or so. The phones went down while we were there, which wasn't a problem, except for the inability to use credit cards. Thankfully we'd brought enough $$ to get us through the rest of our trip, and were able to charge the rest of our meals at VH to our room. VH would have allowed us to take a cash advance against our room bill, but they were charging a 5% extra fee for this, so we were trying to avoid having to do this. All in all, not a major interruption to our vacation.

While most of the internet cafes were down, Island internet has a satelite connection, so we were still able to check mail there. I'm told that they also have a satelite phone, but that the delay is pretty significant, so you wouldn't really want to have a long conversation on it.

We heard a rumor that the strike could extend to power or water, but that may have just been local rumor...
bml is offline  
Old Apr 26th, 2005, 07:12 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 247
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Just returned this last Sat. (the 23rd) from San Pedro and everything was pretty much fine. All calm there, internet was sporadic but up enough to communicate with family. International calls are out and power went down at least an hour or so each day (usually between 3-4pm) and water was out at least once a day but not for very long. Credit card machines down at least half the time. All in all not a major inconvenience but thank goodness we took extra cash. All locals concerned about the situation but not overly so. Didn't affect our enjoyment of San Pedro though, going back in July...
hightide is offline  
Old Apr 27th, 2005, 05:21 AM
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 816
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Katie can provide more of an update, but from what I hear on the radio and from what people tell me, the demonstrations and strike called by the unions yesterday (April 26) pretty much fizzled out, and things remain quiet though with occasional power brownouts and phones not back 100%.

--Lan Sluder
LanSluder is offline  
Old Apr 27th, 2005, 10:53 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,049
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
City is calm and services operating as per normal. The situaiton still needs to be resolved, so its not done yet. Just quiet for now. More from the unions later this afternoon.
Katie_Valk is offline  
Old Apr 28th, 2005, 12:33 PM
  #11  
mlw
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 136
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
I just got back from Ambergris Caye last night.I posted on the 21st that I was concerned about flights being cancelled, but we flew US Air on the 22nd as scheduled.A day or two before we flew home, some other guest at the hotel said he heard some outbound flights had been cancelled, but we had no problem. We had a couple of power outages, a few times the water was off, but really no inconvenience. Enjoyed our stay at Banana Beach.
mlw is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
mad
Mexico & Central America
4
Sep 1st, 2015 04:52 AM
AJCB
Mexico & Central America
6
May 12th, 2008 11:33 AM
boeckmann
Mexico & Central America
10
Oct 15th, 2004 03:37 AM
woodstockguy
Mexico & Central America
4
Apr 8th, 2004 09:52 PM
MarcAmy2003
United States
4
Jun 25th, 2003 12:39 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Do Not Sell My Personal Information


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:39 AM.