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politics and government of
Guatemala's major diplomatic interests are regional security and increasingly, regional development and economic integration.
Guatemala, officially the Republic of Guatemala, is a country in Central America bordered by Mexico to the north and west, Belize and the Caribbean to the northeast, Honduras to the east, El Salvador to the southeast and the Pacific Ocean to the south. With an estimated population of around 16.6 million, it is the most populated country in Central America. Guatemala is a representative democracy; its capital and largest city is Nueva Guatemala de la Asunción, also known as Guatemala City.
|Country||Formal Relations Began||Notes|
|29 June 1998|
Both countries established diplomatic relations on 29 June 1998.
|7 January 1993|
There are four Australia–Guatemala bilateral treaties extended to Australia by the British Empire. Guatemala has an embassy in Canberra, Australia. The Australian embassy in Mexico has consular responsibility for Guatemala. Trade between the two countries is A$32 Million.
|11 September 1993||See Belize-Guatemala relations |
Guatemala has a longstanding claim to a large portion of Belize. The territorial dispute caused problems with the United Kingdom and later with Belize following its 1981 independence from the UK. In December 1989 Guatemala sponsored Belize for permanent observer status in the Organization of American States (OAS). In September 1991 Guatemala recognized Belize's independence and established diplomatic ties, while acknowledging that the boundaries remained in dispute. In anticipation of an effort to bring the border dispute to an end in early 1996, the Guatemalan Congress ratified two long-pending international agreements governing frontier issues and maritime rights.
In early 2000 the Guatemalan Foreign Ministry proposed a border settlement that would transfer more than half of Belize's territory to Guatemala. Following a spate of border incidents, both sides agreed during talks under OAS auspices in November 2000 to confidence-building measures to reduce tensions. They followed that with an agreement on opening substantive discussions on the dispute. Both Guatemala and Belize are participating in the confidence-building measures, including the Guatemala-Belize Language Exchange Project.
In September 2010 the Guatemalan Congress overwhelmingly gave its approval for a referendum to be held to give the people of Guatemala a say in whether or not that country’s claim to Belize should be taken to the International Court of Justice for final resolution. Under the special agreement (compromis) signed in December 2008 by Belize and Guatemala it was agreed that if the people of both nations approved, by way of a simultaneous referendum on the same day, that the dispute would proceed to the ICJ. The outcome of any ruling handed down by the ICJ will be final and binding, regardless of in whose favor the ruling is handed down.
Guatemala maintains official relations with the Republic of China (ROC).
|1 May 1992|
|16 May 1972||See Guatemala-India relations |
|19 May 1948|
|1838||See Guatemala–Mexico relations |
Diplomatic relations between Mexico and Guatemala began in 1838 after the dissolution of the Federal Republic of Central America.
|19 April 1945||See Guatemala-Russia relations |
|24 October 1962|
|1838||See Guatemala–Spain relations |
|1830||See Guatemala-United States relations |
Relations between the United States and Guatemala traditionally have been close, although at times strained by human rights and civil-military issues. U.S. policy objectives in Guatemala include:
The United States, as a member of "the Friends of Guatemala", along with Colombia, Mexico, Spain, Norway, and Venezuela, played an important role in the UN-moderated peace accords. The United States strongly supported the six substantive and three procedural accords, which, along with the signing of the December 29, 1996 final accord, form the blueprint for profound political, economic, and social change. To that end, the U.S. government committed over $500 million to support peace implementation since 1997.
Violent criminal activity continues to be a problem in Guatemala, including murder, rape, and armed assaults. In recent years the number of violent crimes reported by U.S. citizens has steadily increased, though the number of Americans traveling to Guatemala has increased.
Most U.S. assistance to Guatemala is provided through the U.S. Agency for International Development's (USAID) offices for Guatemala. USAID/Guatemala's current program builds on the gains of the peace process that followed the signing of the peace accords in December 1996, as well as on the achievements of its 1997–2004 peace program. The current program works to advance U.S. foreign policy objectives by focusing on Guatemala's potential as Central America's largest economy and trading partner of the United States, but also recognizes the country's lagging social indicators and widespread poverty. The three areas of focus for USAID/Guatemala's program are modeled after the Millennium Challenge Account areas—ruling justly, economic freedom, and investing in people.
The Central American Ministers of Trade meet on a regular basis to work on regional approaches to trade issues. In March 1998, Guatemala joined its Central American neighbors in signing a Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA). In 2000 it joined Honduras and El Salvador in signing a free trade agreement with Mexico, which went into effect in 2001. Guatemala also originated the idea for, and is the seat of, the Central American Parliament (PARLACEN).
Central America is located on the southern tip of North America, or is sometimes defined as a subcontinent of the Americas, bordered by Mexico to the north, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the east, and the Pacific Ocean to the west and south. Central America consists of seven countries: Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Panama. The combined population of Central America has been estimated to be 41,739,000 and 42,688,190.
A Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) is a trade pact that establishes a framework for expanding trade and resolving outstanding disputes between countries.
Honduras, officially the Republic of Honduras, is a country in Central America. In the past, it was sometimes referred to as "Spanish Honduras" to differentiate it from British Honduras, which later became modern-day Belize. The republic of Honduras is bordered to the west by Guatemala, to the southwest by El Salvador, to the southeast by Nicaragua, to the south by the Pacific Ocean at the Gulf of Fonseca, and to the north by the Gulf of Honduras, a large inlet of the Caribbean Sea.
Guatemala participates in several regional groups, particularly those related to the environment and trade. For example, US President Clinton and the Central American presidents signed the CONCAUSA (Conjunto Centroamerica-USA) agreement at the Summit of the Americas in December 1994. CONCAUSA is a cooperative plan of action to promote clean, efficient energy use; conserve the region's biodiversity; strengthen legal and institutional frameworks and compliance mechanisms; and improve and harmonize environmental protection standards.
Efficient energy use, sometimes simply called energy efficiency, is the goal to reduce the amount of energy required to provide products and services. For example, insulating a home allows a building to use less heating and cooling energy to achieve and maintain a comfortable temperature. Installing LED lighting, fluorescent lighting, or natural skylight windows reduces the amount of energy required to attain the same level of illumination compared to using traditional incandescent light bulbs. Improvements in energy efficiency are generally achieved by adopting a more efficient technology or production process or by application of commonly accepted methods to reduce energy losses.
Illicit drugs: Guatemala is a transit country for cocaine shipments; minor producer of illicit opium poppy and cannabis for the international drug trade; active eradication program in 1996 effectively eliminated the cannabis crop; proximity to Mexico makes Guatemala a major staging area for drugs (cocaine shipments).
Cocaine, also known as coke, is a strong stimulant mostly used as a recreational drug. It is commonly snorted, inhaled as smoke, or dissolved and injected into a vein. Mental effects may include loss of contact with reality, an intense feeling of happiness, or agitation. Physical symptoms may include a fast heart rate, sweating, and large pupils. High doses can result in very high blood pressure or body temperature. Effects begin within seconds to minutes of use and last between five and ninety minutes. Cocaine has a small number of accepted medical uses such as numbing and decreasing bleeding during nasal surgery.
The illegal drug trade or drug trafficking is a global black market dedicated to the cultivation, manufacture, distribution and sale of drugs that are subject to drug prohibition laws. Most jurisdictions prohibit trade, except under license, of many types of drugs through the use of drug prohibition laws.
The Belizean–Guatemalan territorial dispute is an unresolved binational territorial dispute between the states of Belize and Guatemala, neighbours in Central America. The territory of Belize has been claimed in whole or in part by Guatemala since 1821.
Visa requirements for Guatemalan citizens are administrative entry restrictions by the authorities of other states placed on citizens of Guatemala. As of 9 October 2018, Guatemalan citizens had visa-free or visa on arrival access to 137 countries and territories, ranking the Guatemalan passport 37th in terms of travel freedom according to the Henley Passport Index.
Colombia seeks diplomatic and commercial relations with all countries, regardless of their ideologies or political or economic systems. For this reason, the Colombian economy is quite open, relying on international trade and following the guidelines given by international law.
Honduras is a member of the United Nations, the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Central American Parliament (PARLACEN), the Central American Integration System (SICA), and the Central American Security Commission (CASQ). During 1995-96, Honduras, a founding member of the United Nations, for the first time served as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. Honduras is also a member of the International Criminal Court with a Bilateral Immunity Agreement of protection for the US-military.
Jamaica has diplomatic relations with most nations and is a member of the United Nations and the Organization of American States. Jamaica chairs the Working Group on smaller Economies.
The foreign relations of Latvia are the primary responsibility of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Today's Republic of Latvia regards itself as a continuation of the 1918–1940 republic. After the declaration on the restoration of its full independence on August 21, 1991, Latvia became a member of the United Nations on September 17, 1991, and is a signatory to a number of UN organizations and other international agreements. Latvia welcomes further cooperation and integration with NATO, European Union, OECD and other Western organizations. It also seeks more active participation in UN peacekeeping efforts worldwide.
The foreign relations of Mexico are directed by the President of the United Mexican States and managed through the Secretariat of Foreign Affairs. The principles of the foreign policy are constitutionally recognized in the Article 89, Section 10, which include: respect for international law and legal equality of states, their sovereignty and independence, non-intervention in the domestic affairs of other countries, peaceful resolution of conflicts, and promotion of collective security through active participation in international organizations. Since the 1930s, the Estrada Doctrine has served as a crucial complement to these principles.
Peru is an important second-tier state in South America, Peru has been a member of the United Nations since 1949, and Peruvian Javier Pérez de Cuéllar served as UN Secretary General from 1981 to 1991. Former President Alberto Fujimori's tainted re-election to a third term in June 2000 strained Peru's relations with the United States and with many Latin American and European countries, but relations improved with the installation of an interim government in November 2000 and the inauguration of Alejandro Toledo in July 2001.
As part of the foreign relations of Suriname, the country is a participant in numerous international organizations. International tensions have arisen due to Suriname's status as a trans-shipment point for South American recreational drugs destined mostly for Europe.
Foreign relations of Australia are influenced by its position as a leading trading nation and as a significant donor of humanitarian aid. Australia's foreign policy is guided by a commitment to multilateralism and regionalism, as well as to strong bilateral relations with its allies. Key concerns include free trade, terrorism, refugees, economic co-operation with Asia and stability in the Asia-Pacific. Australia is active in the United Nations and the Commonwealth of Nations. Given its history of starting and supporting important regional and global initiatives, it has been described as a regional middle power par excellence.
Belize maintains 14 embassies to foreign countries, one consulate, and three missions to international organizations. In 1990, Belize became a member of the Organization of American States.
Australia–Mexico relations refers to the bilateral relations between Australia and Mexico. Both nations are members of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, G-20 major economies, MIKTA, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Trans-Pacific Partnership, and the World Trade Organization.
Mexico–Turkey relations refers to the bilateral relations between Mexico and Turkey. Both nations are members of the Australia Group, G20, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and the United Nations.
Ireland–Mexico relations refer to foreign relations between Ireland and Mexico. The relationship has been often associated with the Irish migration to Mexico. Both nations are members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and World Trade Organization.
The illegal drug trade in Latin America concerns primarily the production and sale of cocaine and cannabis, including the export of these banned substances to the United States and Europe. The Coca cultivation is concentrated in the Andes of South America, particularly in Colombia, Peru and Bolivia; this is the world's only source region for coca.
Guatemala–Mexico relations refers to the historical and current bilateral relationship between Guatemala and Mexico. Both nations are members of the Association of Caribbean States, Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, Organization of American States, Organization of Ibero-American States and the United Nations.
Belize–Mexico relations refers to the diplomatic relations between Belize and Mexico. Both nations are members of the Association of Caribbean States, Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, Organization of American States and the United Nations.
El Salvador–Mexico relations refers to the diplomatic relations between El Salvador and Mexico. Both nations are members of the Association of Caribbean States, Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, Organization of American States, Organization of Ibero-American States and the United Nations.
El Salvador–Spain refers to the current and historical relations between El Salvador and Spain. Both nations are members of the Association of Academies of the Spanish Language and the Organization of Ibero-American States.
Mexico–Trinidad and Tobago relations refers to the diplomatic relations between the United Mexican States and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. Both nations are members of the Association of Caribbean States, Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, Organization of American States and the United Nations.
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Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington or D.C., is the capital of the United States. Founded after the American Revolution as the seat of government of the newly independent country, Washington was named after George Washington, first President of the United States and Founding Father. As the seat of the United States federal government and several international organizations, Washington is an important world political capital. The city is also one of the most visited cities in the world, with more than 20 million tourists annually.