EU ambassador praises Guyana for championing ‘peaceful resolution’ to border controversy


European Union (EU) Ambassador to Guyana René Van Nes has praised Guyana’s attempts to peacefully resolve the territorial border controversy with neighbouring Venezuela.

During an award ceremony at his Bel Air Spings, Georgetown  residence on Thursday night, the Ambassador said Guyana is a party involved in an issue that is similar to that which caused the Russia/Ukraine war. However, instead of approaching the border controversy with violence and war, the issue has been taken to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), a step that Van Nes said is a peaceful path.

“As you have your own issues with legal order when it comes, for example, to the border with Venezuela. So now that those borders are being disputed, Guyana chooses the path of finding a peaceful resolution under international law through the International Court of Justice,” the EU Ambassador said.

Further, the EU Ambassador said Guyana’s response to its own issues and its relentless support of Ukraine as Russia continues to infringe on international laws, shows the importance of human rights.

“That’s why I’m really proud to see every day that the European Union is more united than ever in supporting Ukraine. And we can only have that support and continue that suppor if we have the support of likeminded countries in the world, like Guyana,” Van Nes said.

Highlighting Guyana’s efforts, he said Guyana has been a part of the resolution to condemn the aggression of Russia towards Ukraine. This resolution was adopted in March, with Guyana being among 141 states involved. Then, in October, Guyana again, joined by members of the EU, rejected Russia’s illegal annexation of Ukrainian territories.

“143 UN states condemned this infringement on the sovereignty of Ukraine. And this time, Guyana not only supported this, they were actually a co-sponsor of the resolution.

“I think that really speaks to the common values and the shared objectives that we have between the European Union and Guyana,” he said.

Guyana is seeking to obtain a final and binding judgement that the 1899 Arbitral Award, which established the location of the land boundary between then British Guiana and Venezuela, remains valid and that the Essequibo region belongs to Guyana and not Venezuela.

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