Guyana/Venezuela border controversy for ICJ

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The border controversy between Guyana and Venezuela will be referred to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Tuesday, January 30, 2018.

The decision was made by the United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Gueterres after his Personal Representative, Dagg Halvor Nylander failed to resolve the controversy over the 1899 Arbitral Tribunal Award that settled the boundary between Venezuela and then British Guiana.

The UN Secretary-General had promised to refer the matter to the ICJ if he determines that no significant progress has been made to resolve the issue during the period of discussion.

The Guyana Government, the Ministry said, welcomes the decision.

“Guyana has always held the view that the ICJ is the appropriate forum for the peaceful and definitive settlement of the controversy, and is pleased that that view has prevailed under the process developed by both Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and Secretary General Antonio Guterres,” the statement said.

According to the Ministry, Guyana will not allow factors extraneous to the controversy to influence its referral to the Court; but it will continue the advancement of peaceful relations with Venezuela whose people are the brothers and sisters of Guyanese.

The statement outlined that Guyana has “stood firm against Venezuela’s attempt to re-open a territorial boundary settled and recognised for half a century before its independence, and done so despite the manifest unequal strengths between the two countries, is to our national credit.”

“Guyana as one of the world’s small developing countries is pleased that its reliance on the rule of law internationally has been the underpinning of its national sovereignty,” the Ministry said.

See full statement from the United Nations on the issue: https://www.un.org/sg/en/content/sg/statement/2018-01-30/statement-attributable-spokesman-secretary-general-border

See previous story here: https://newsroom.gy/2018/01/02/un-decision-shortly-on-border-controversy-foreign-affairs/

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