Maya


The struggle for Maya land, oil, and gold

by Robin Llewellyn 11 July 2012 After two very recent attacks on Maya community leaders in Guatemala, the challenges faced by the lawyers applying domestic law and international indigenous rights legislation to these conflicts are revealing, as legal concepts are reinterpreted by governments in indigenous communities across the Maya region of Central America. On the night of 12 June two men broke into the home of José Tavico Tzunun in Santa Cruz del Qiché, Western Guatemala, and murdered him. Tzunun was a member of the K’iche’ Peoples Council in Defense of Life, Mother Nature, Earth, and Indigenous Territory. He helped […]

Oil

Cristina Coc

Maya Land Rights & Governance

Cristina Coc and Pabla Miss from the Maya Leaders Association Toledo Alcaldes Association discuss their advocacy for Maya land rights in Belize. Maya Land Rights: the Conejo and Santa Cruz Lawsuits Contact: Nancy Stanley, Associate Director for External Relations The University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law 520-621-8430 (office) 520-979-0142 (cell) James Anaya 520-626-6341 (office) UA LAW PROFESSOR AND STUDENTS HELP SECURE CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS FOR THE MAYA COMMUNITIES OF BELIZE In a potentially precedent-setting step with far-reaching implications, the Maya indigenous villages of Conejo and Santa Cruz will soon file claims in the Supreme Court of Belize, asserting […]


Belize’s Failure: U.S. Proxy or Corrupt Leadership?

By: Hubert Pipersburgh on September 29, 2011 As a peripheral economy it is difficult for countries such as Belize. The U.S. cast a huge shadow. Few leaders in the region have been able to plot an autonomous course.  The late Michael Manley of Jamaica with his non-aligned movement during the cold war tried, Belize was a member of that group under the Premiership of George Cadle Price. With the exception of Cuba, Grenada under the Late Maurice Bishop and his New Jewel Movement attempted a course that did not rely on the U.S. patronage he was promptly assassinated in cold blood […]


Crime and Society

By: Dr. Robert Winslow Belize is a parliamentary democracy with a constitution enacted in 1981 upon independence from the United Kingdom. Numerous ruins indicate that for hundreds of years Belize was heavily populated by the Maya Indians, whose relatively advanced civilization reached its height between A.D. 250 and 900. Eventually the civilization declined leaving behind small groups whose offspring still exist in Belize contributing positively to the culturally diverse population. In 1502, Columbus sailed through parts of the Caribbean, but did not actually visit the area later known as British Honduras. The first reference to European settlement in the colony […]

Crime

Environment and development in coastal regions and in small islands

ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT OF URBAN AND INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT A case history: Cancún, Quintana Roo, Mexico By Peter V. Wiese, retired exploration geologist Executive Summary Before its development, Cancún Island was a barrier island, 17 km long and 100-400 m wide. It faced the Caribbean Sea and enclosed a shallow lagoon and was an important nesting site for seabirds and sea turtles. There were several openings to the mangrove lined lagoon in which there was a variety of marine life. In order to create a tax base for the newly created state of Quintana Roo (1973), it was decided to create an […]


Losing Maya Heritage to Looters

This article was published in National Geographic about looting in Guatemala, but since it affects Belize as well, I thought I’d share with you all. The tunnels are the work of “huecheros”—the local slang term for antiquity looters, derived from the Maya word for armadillo. On a building overlooking an ancient plaza, the looters scrawl a message, brazen and taunting: “We, the huecheros, stuck it to this place.” Almost every pyramid in the sprawling site has a looter’s tunnel on at least one side. Most of the hieroglyphic panels, the pottery, and the jade from tombs here have been raided […]


Belize is obligated under international law to protect the Maya people’s rights to their lands and natural resources 2

SKELETON ARGUMENT OF THE CLAIMANTS APPENDIX B: INTERNATIONAL LEGAL OBLIGATIONS OF BELIZE 1. Belize is obligated, by its own legal commitments in international human  rights treaties, to recognize and protect indigenous peoples’ rights to land and  resources. In addition, customary international law requires Belize to uphold  these rights apart from its treaty commitments. 2. The Constitution of Belize guarantees the fundamental rights of all  Belizeans to property, non-discrimination, life, and security of the person. The  Interpretation Act instructs this Court to interpret the Constitution in a manner  consistent with its obligations under relevant international law.1 A summary of  the relevant […]


Noh Mul has been clearly marked since the 90's 1

Thanks to Tony Rath Photography for sharing these pictures with us. Mid 1990’s, I did an extensive photoshoot on the Maya site of Noh Mul. Unfortunately, early 2000, we had a multiple hard drive failures at the studio and lost all except these 4. I always planned on going back … sad indeed … Related articles COLA on Destruction of Maya Temple (fiwebelize.com) Belize officials call for prosecutions in pyramid destruction (wtvr.com) Belize deputy PM calls for prosecution in pyramid destruction (cnn.com) One of World’s Largest Mayan Pyramids Leveled For Gravel (latinospost.com) Mayan pyramid demolished for road fill (abc.net.au)


COLA on Destruction of Maya Temple

News5 Belize May 13, 2013 It is not the first time that there has been destruction to Noh Mul. Our records show that in June 1998, similar destructive activity was reported by the Archeology Department on one of the smaller plazas. Fortunately, the damage was not as extensive as it is tonight to the main ceremonial plaza. But the motive is the same; the material is sought for road construction due to the scarcity of quarries in the north. In the absence of an immediate response from the Ministry of Tourism and Culture and other relevant government agencies, Citizens Organized […]


TECHNOLOGY TO THE RESCUE! 7

By Gustavo A. Ramirez, Guidance Counselor / Education Consultant Some people may consider it as pathetic, even disgusting perhaps, that today’s super-advanced mobile technology has surpassed and replaced everyday human interaction. Raging over the internet this month is a picture of Albert Einstein, with a caption next to his picture, “Has this day arrived?” The controversial saying that some people attribute to Einstein, although it has not been proven, is one wherein he predicts that technology would surpass humanity and eventually create a generation of idiots. The fact is that today’s advanced technology is no longer science fiction, as it […]


Contractor and UDP Hopefull Bulldozes 2300 Year Old Mayan Temple 1

Something that seems to be a norm in Belize has made it’s way into the International Media’s eye. The senseless and ignorant destruction of our Belizean Heritage and History. Who caused the destruction? A political affiliate and aspirant for the UDP party Denny Grijalva. Quote from 7NewsBelize: The name we saw on the heavy equipment is D-Mar Construction – owned by Denny Grijalva, UDP hopeful for Orange Walk Central. Grijalva said he knew nothing about the project and referred us to his foreman who never answered at least a dozen calls we made to him. Then Grijalva said he would […]