As the United Nations readies to render a decision on the way forward for the simmering border controversy between Guyana and Venezuela, it appears that the neighbouring country is continuing to push heavily for a diplomatic solution rather than one from an international court.
On Friday, Venezuela’s Foreign Minister, Delcy Rodriguez, met with Chief of Staff of the Secretariat of the Organization of Nations United Nations (UN), Edmond Mulet, to discuss her country’s position.
According to Venezuela media reports, Rodríguez during Friday’s meeting “reiterated” the willingness of her Government to resolve the territorial dispute with Guyana over the Essequibo region through diplomacy.
In her account on the social network Twitter, the minister said that the meeting transmitted the confidence of President Nicolas Maduro to resolve the controversy according to the provisions of the Geneva Agreement and its non-negotiable position to defend the “rights” of the Bolivarian nation.
On July 10, 2015, Venezuela formally asked the UN to appoint a Good Officer to mediate the dispute with Guyana and declare its sovereign and just rights over the territory of Essequibo.
However, the Government of Guyana has insisted that the simmering border controversy, over 100 years old, should be settled once and for all in an international court.
Over the last 25 years, the two countries have been using the Good Officer process, which is overlooked by the UN General Secretary.
Guyana has been arguing that this process is a waste of time.
Last year, Guyana discovered oil in its offshore concessions with Venezuela immediately moving to restate its claim to Essequibo as well as the waters where the oil was discovered.
The claim was done on the same day that Guyana celebrated its independence.
The matter ended up last year October before the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon where both Guyana and Venezuela agreed to have the UN Chief decide the best way forward to decide once and for all on a solution.
Since then, UN officials have visited Guyana and Venezuela to gather information.
Guyana has been using a number of international forums to complain about Venezuela’s aggression, including CARICOM.
Venezuela’s claim is almost for the entire Essequibo, the biggest county in Guyana, a mineral rich area known more for its vast areas of untouched forests.
It is home to thousands of Guyanese and several Amerindian villages.
Ban Ki-Moon is expected to render a decision before year-end on the way forward. He is due to step down then.
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