Oct 04, 2015 News
– tells UN one thing, tells Venez. another
Despite the intervention of the United Nations (UN) last week, the Venezuelan administration seems to be sending mixed signals as to whether it is genuinely interested in solving the territorial controversy with Guyana in the spirit of peace and cooperation.
Venezuelan Vice-President Jorge Arreaza in his capacity as Chairman of the Presidential Commission on the Essequibo delivered sharp words on the matter to the Spanish speaking nation. His address was televised but was later released yesterday by Venezuela’s Ministry of Popular Power for Foreign Affairs.
Arreaza expressed that the rulers of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, “undoubtedly motivated by dark transnational interests and puffed by imperial corporate centers, have taken an arbitrary, illegal and unilateral attitude to ignore the Geneva Agreement and refuse to activate the Good Offices according to International Law.”
He said that Venezuela “once again deplores the absurd and irrational actions taken by the current government of Guyana to ignore its international obligations, citing false protections based on lies and subterfuge in order to create a situation of aggression against Venezuela, with the obvious involvement of imperial forces.”
Continuing, he reiterated earlier claims that the 1899 Arbitral Award was an imperial fraud and is in fact null and void.
He emphasized that Venezuela suffered 116 years of the fraud since the implementation of the action of imperial agents who sought to take away Essequibo.
Arreaza contended that the 160 thousand square kilometers of continental territory and water areas form an indivisible part of Venezuela’s territory.
The Vice President went on “We express the profound outrage at what this ominous date represents in the history of world diplomacy, which showed the vilest face of systematic depredation that British Empire perpetrated against the territorial integrity of many nations of the world through the misappropriation of more than two million square kilometers on our planet.”
The Vice President said that the “arbitration fraud” which occurred in Paris, France on October 3, 1899 summarized the criminal act of diplomatic piracy.
He recalled that well into the twentieth century, the British Empire, the then colonial occupier of British Guiana (now Guyana), in its intentions, expressed in the “barbaric Arbitration fraud”, chose to get rid of the issue when granting independence.
He is of the opinion that the Geneva Agreement of 1966 between the parties is law in both countries and recognizes the validity of his country’s claim which has seen unreservedly null and void, the Paris award of 1899.
But several local experts on Law of the Sea have made it clear that the Geneva Agreement is not a law in Guyana or anywhere else, contrary to what the Vice President said. “More importantly, the Agreement does not seek to allocate land nor does it supersede or overthrow the 1899 Arbitration Award.”
They even reinforced to Kaieteur News that it makes no mention of the 1899 Arbitration Award being null and void or of Venezuela having additional land within Guyana’s borders.
They stressed that “This press release is a testimony to the dishonesty of the Venezuelan administration.”
On Friday, President David Granger said, “As far as I am concerned this territory belongs to Guyana and any attempt by Venezuela to use armed force to prevent Guyana from exercising its sovereignty over its land or sea space or airspace is illegal.”
Granger said that there were commitments made on the part of Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro on installing ambassadors between the two countries.
However, there were no guarantees made by Maduro that there will be no further aggression, should Guyana continue to pursue development possibilities in Essequibo ahead of any solutions to the border controversy.
Any such solution is to be arrived at by the Special United Nation’s delegation tasked with investigating the situation.
The Head of State also updated the media on other interventions made on the matter as facilitated by UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon.
He said, too, that the Venezuelan troops that were deployed in the Cuyuni area in western Guyana have been withdrawn.
He opined the agreements do bode well for the restoration of normalcy on the border.
On the matter of developing the Essequibo, the President said, “We would certainly like to proceed and this is the undertaking which we have given foreign investors; we are calling on the international community to preserve the security of our country, our territorial integrity.”
He said Guyana has embraced the diplomatic course of action to prevent, forestall or inhibit Venezuela “from behaving in a lawless manner.”
He had said while the controversy with Venezuela over the border has persisted for 50 years, there has been no full scale invasion of Guyana and as such, influence by the Americans has probably worked in preventing the controversy from degenerating into violence. (KIANA WILBURG)
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