Venezuela’s recent statement a threat to regional, international peace
President Dr. Irfaan Ali
President Dr. Irfaan Ali

–Guyana urges neighbouring country to pursue peaceful means to address concerns it might have
–maintains waters in question form part of Exclusive Economic Zone

The following is the full statement by the Government of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana in response to a communique issued by Venezuela:

The Government of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana is compelled to respond to a Communique issued today by the Government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela which complained of Guyana’s intention to put up for bid certain oil blocks in the waters adjacent to its coast, and concluded with a threat to “apply all the necessary measures” to prevent operations licensed by Guyana in these waters, which Venezuela claims as its own.

Guyana considers this a threat not only to Guyana but to regional and international peace and security, as well as to all of Guyana’s current and potential investment partners.

Guyana has no doubt that under international law the waters in question form part of its Exclusive Economic Zone, where Guyana alone enjoys sovereign rights over the resources in the sea and beneath the seabed. If Venezuela disputes this, then it is obliged by the United Nations Charter and the Charter of the OAS to employ only peaceful means to seek a resolution. Both Charters prohibit the threat or use of force against another State.

Guyana therefore implores Venezuela to honor its obligation to pursue only peaceful means to settle any dispute it may have with Guyana, including adjudication before the International Court Justice, where Guyana has sought confirmation of the land boundary between the two States. Allowing the Court to decide any other dispute between the parties would ensure a resolution that is peaceful, equitable and in accordance with international law.


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