With the President of Brazil and the Prime Minister of St. Vincent seeking to convene a meeting between President Irfaan Ali and Venezuelan President Nicholas Maduro, the Guyanese President is making it clear that there will be no compromise on Guyana’s case before the International Court of Justice.
Earlier today after hosting telephone conversations with the Venezuelan President, the Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Ralph Gonsalves dispatched a letter to President Ali and President Maduro inviting the two leaders to a meeting in St. Vincent and the Grenadines on the 14th December.
Dr. Gonsalves said the meeting would be held under the auspices of CARICOM and the Community of States of Latin America and the Caribbean (CELAC).
A statement from the Office of the President indicated that President Ali has agreed to the meeting.
Speaking to News Source this afternoon, President Ali said while Guyana may not be adverse to meetings and discussions, there will be no compromise on the current case before the ICJ and Guyana’s clear position on the border controversy.
“We are not adversed to communications and meetings, but our position is very clear on our border and the controversy that is before the ICJ, we are very clear and I want to make it explicitly clear that the development of every region of our country will continue, investment and investors in every region of this country will remain safe, and we are going to continue the advancement of the development process of every single region in this country”, the President told News Source.
The President of Venezuela has been attempting to open the doors to dialogue on the border controversy. Guyana has repeatedly stated that the time for dialogue has passed, and with the matter before the International Court, that is the place it will remain and will be determined.
President Ali repeatedly told News Source this afternoon that there will be “no compromise on Guyana’s case before the ICJ”. He assured that Guyana’s case at the ICJ is not up for any negotiation and the country’s defence and other partnerships with its global friends and allies will continue as planned.
On Friday, CARICOM Heads of Government held an emergency virtual meeting on the Guyana-Venezuela border controversy. In a statement after that meeting, CARICOM reaffirmed its support for Guyana, but also called for a de-escalation of the conflict and for appropriate dialogue between the leaders of Venezuela and Guyana to ensure peaceful coexistence, the application and respect for international law and the avoidance of the use or threats of force.
Guyana has always maintained that there has only been one side issuing threats and escalating the conflict and that side is Venezuela.
Statement from Office of the President of Guyana
The President of Guyana, His Excellency Mohamed Irfaan Ali was contacted by leaders representing CELAC, Brazil and several bilateral partners, encouraging dialogue with the President of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela. Last evening, in the emergency meeting of the Heads of Government of CARICOM, the Heads urged President Ali to explore the possibility of a meeting with President Maduro in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
President Ali reiterated that Guyana’s land boundary is not up for discussion, as it is currently before the ICJ and when adjudicated will be fully respected by Guyana. The President on numerous occasions has made it explicitly clear that the case before the ICJ will not be an issue for bilateral discussions.
President Ali will continue to engage our bilateral partners on defence cooperation pacts, as well as the on-going range of political, social and economic arrangements.
President Ali was approached today by the Prime Minister of St. Vincent and the Grenadines on a meeting with President Maduro on Thursday in St. Vincent & the Grenadines to be observed by Brazil, CARICOM, and a UN Under-Secretary General. President Ali has since agreed to have this meeting.
Guyana is clear that the advancement of our development agenda will not be compromised. Our development partners and investors can be assured that there will be no changes nor alterations to existing arrangements.
Guyana has always been committed to international peace and security and promotion of good neighbourly relations.
Further, Guyana will not deviate from and will strictly adhere to the ICJ process in the resolution of the border controversy, and to ensuring that the region remains Zone of Peace.