Nothing to fear from activities within Guyana’s territorial space -President Ali

Nothing to fear from activities within Guyana’s territorial space -President Ali

In wake of Venezuela’s objection to the presence of a British Navy vessel in Guyana, President Irfaan Ali has stated that “neither Venezuela nor any other State, has anything to fear from activities within Guyana’s sovereign territory or waters”.

The British military vessel is in Guyana for training exercises on security and other issues. Venezuela sees the presence of the military vessel in Guyana as a threat to its territorial integrity.

But in a statement on Thursday night, President Irfaan Ali said Guyana harbors no ambitions or intentions to covet what does not belong to it, and Guyana is fully committed to peaceful relations with its neighbours and all countries in the Region.

The President also noted that Guyana remains fully steadfast in promoting and advancing peace whilst pursuing national development, adding that the country has long been engaged in partnerships with regional and international states aimed at enhancing internal security.

The partnerships, he said, do not threaten anyone and are in no way intended to be aggressive or constitute an offensive act against any State.

Venezuela continues to claim Guyana’s Essequibo region, which amounts to two-thirds of the country.

Guyana has repeatedly rejected the claims and in 2018 filed a case before the International Court seeking a final settlement and re-enforcing the 1899 Arbitral Award which settled the border dispute.

Tensions flared two months ago as Venezuela started a build-up of military personnel close to the border with Guyana, and held a referendum seeking to annex Guyana’s Essequibo.

With international condemnation mounting on Venezuela and the international community rejecting its claims, CARICOM and CELAC stepped in and brought the Presidents of the two countries together for a face-to-face meeting in St. Vincent.

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