Guatemala’s President Jimmy Morales said that the Wednesday shooting was a “cowardly and excessive attack,” and summoned his ambassador urging Belize to bring those responsible for the death of the 13-year-old boy to justice. Belize accused Guatemala of amassing troops in the border areas and escalating tensions. According to Belize’s government, its security forces were investigating illegal activities in the border areas when they came under fire and shot back in self-defense. Guatemala claims that 13-year-old Julio René Alvarado Ruano, his father and his 11-year-old brother were attacked on Wednesday as they were planting crops in the border community. Guatemala and Belize have a long-standing territorial dispute, with Guatemala claiming parts of Belize’s territory as its own.
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