Sep 09, 2021 News
– Move rejected by Guyanese politicians
Kaieteur News – The latest decision by the Venezuelan Government and its opposition coalition – the Unity Platform of Venezuela – to unite on the territorial claim to the Essequibo region has been met with strong rejection from their political counterparts here in Guyana.
On Tuesday both the Government of Guyana and the A Partnership for National Unity +Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) issued statements in which they firmly rejected the move by the Heads of Delegation for the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.
According to the statement issued by the Government of Guyana, the Venezuelan met in Mexico City and signed an agreement on a number of issues including the country’s longstanding claim to Essequibo.
But in the statement released by the local Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Government said that “the agreement is an overt threat to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Guyana.”
The statement continued that: “Guyana cannot be used as an altar of sacrifice for the settlement of Venezuela’s internal political differences. While the Government of Guyana welcomes the domestic accord within Venezuela, an agreement defying international law and process is not a basis for mediating harmony.”
“The controversy between Guyana and Venezuela is properly before the International Court of Justice and will remain there for peaceful resolution,” the statement added.
Added to this, Guyana’s main Opposition, the APNU+AFC Coalition, in its statement too expressed concern about the agreement signed by the Heads of Delegation of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.
The APNU+AFC Coalition also took the opportunity to reaffirm the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Guyana, and reminded the parties involved that the Guyana/Venezuela controversy remains before the International Court of Justice for resolution.“We reiterate our faith in the rule of international law in pursuit of a peaceful settlement in this regard and our continued support of a national approach to safeguarding Guyana’s sovereignty,” the party said in its release.
On Monday, Reuters, an international news agency, reported that the Venezuelan government and opposition representatives said they had reached partial agreement during talks in Mexico City as part of a roadmap drawn up to tackle the once prosperous country’s long-running crisis.
According to Reuters, a joint statement following negotiations between the two parties from September 3rd – 6th, revealed their areas of agreement related to social measures, particularly on those affected by COVID-19, and a territorial dispute concerning neighbouring, Guyana.
The news site said that the talks come after a more-than two-year push to oust socialist President Nicolas Maduro, whose opponents label him a dictator, who rigged his 2018 re-election and violated human rights to quash dissent.
According to Reuters, unlike in previous failed attempts, the current dialogue includes participation by a large group of other parties, including Norway, which led the talks, as well as the Netherlands, Russia, Bolivia and Turkey.
Meanwhile, the international news agency outlined that the Venezuelan Government and opposition representatives said in a joint statement, that talks on economic and social measures, including special drawing rights with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) would continue in the next round.
“Progress was made in consultation mechanisms with political and social actors, making them as inclusive as possible,” the statement said.
The news site noted too, that the two sides had already met in the Mexican capital last month for intense talks.
Following those talks, Jorge Rodriguez, President of the Venezuelan Congress and leader of Maduro’s negotiating team said: “We have a long way to go, we have a lot of work to do, we have many issues to discuss, but today we have shown … that we can say the hardest things to ourselves.”
Rodriguez said too that after the “early agreements” reached in the round, representatives from both sides will return to the table in Mexico at the end of the month.
As a result of the progressive talks, Maduro’s government is demanding the lifting of sanctions, imposed by the United States and Europe on Venezuelan officials and institutions – including state oil company PDVSA.
US President Joe Biden’s government has said it is willing to remove the sanctions if “meaningful progress” in opposition negotiations is made. On the other hand, the Venezuelan opposition has called for humanitarian aid, including vaccines against COVID-19, to be allowed into the country, the freeing of supporters it considers political prisoners and guaranteed regional elections in November.
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