Ambassador takes direct appeal to Maduro

first_imgGuyana-Venezuela border controversy…plugs peaceful resolution at Non-Aligned Movement Summit In the presence of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro, a top Guyanese diplomat accused the Bolivarian Republic of continuing to present a potential threat to the peace and security of Guyana, as that country continues to ignore an 1899 Tribunal Award in laying claim to two-thirds of Guyana’s territory.Guyana’s Ambassador to Venezuela, Cheryl MilesSpeaking at the XVII Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), being hosted on the island of Margarita, Guyana’s Ambassador to Venezuela, Cheryl Miles, reminded that the sacred principle of the Non-Aligned Movement was respect for territorial integrity.“As delegations are aware, more than two-thirds of my country is subject to a claim by the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. This represents a potential threat to our peace and security,” she told the Summit being chaired by President Maduro.Speaking directly to President Maduro, Ambassador Miles said she was convinced that cooperation, friendship and mutual respect were underlying principles for the maintenance of peace and stability and for the success of integration movements in the Latin American and Caribbean Region, as in the wider world.“Therefore, I wish to use this opportunity to reaffirm that Guyana is committed to the search for a peaceful solution to the controversy with Venezuela,” she stated.She noted that since the last meeting of the Non-Aligned Movement in Iran back in August 2012, there have been significant developments with regard to the long-running controversy, including a decision by Guyana not to continue with the United Nations Secretary General’s Good Officers’ process, which has been ongoing for two and a half decades without very little success.The Ambassador, however, noted that Guyana was continuing to cooperate with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who is considering the exercise of his mandate under the Geneva Agreement of 1966 to resolve the controversy.She also reminded the Summit of the position of the Caribbean Community (Caricom) Heads of Government at their 37th Regular Meeting held in July 2016, where they signalled their full confidence in the Geneva Agreement to bring the controversy to a definitive and judicial conclusion.“Mr Chairman, Guyanese are peace-loving people and our sister Republic of Venezuela likewise advocates diplomacy of peace, as is evident in the theme of this Summit. This is the basis on which we have built, and which we hope to continue to build, good neighbourly relations with Venezuela in the true spirit of Non-Aligned unity and mutual respect,” she stated.Ambassador Miles is attending the Summit on behalf of Guyana’s President, David Granger, who is currently participating in the 71st Regular Session of the UN General Assembly in New York.During a news conference in New York on Monday, ahead of his address to the Assembly, President Granger said that he was satisfied with the efforts of the UN Secretary General in trying to resolve the border controversy. He said that while the Government had hoped that the process of ending the decades-long controversy would have been further advanced, it is not due to a lack of effort by the Secretary General’s Office, but rather the slothful pace at which the Venezuelan Government was moving.“I am satisfied with what the Secretary General has done; I am not satisfied that the Bolivarian Republic has acted in good faith. It is clear that much more needs to be done by Venezuela if this matter is to be resolved… In my experience over the last 50 years, I have not seen a Secretary General so engaged in this matter; he has done everything possible over the last year since first meeting in Bridgetown. I am convinced of his sincerity in trying to bring this matter to closure,” the President declared.He explained that since the signing of the Geneva Agreement in February 1966, Guyana has abided by all of its provisions. This agreement has given the Secretary General specific responsibilities in the absence of Guyana and Venezuela reaching a mutually accepted position.last_img read more