Venezuela’s recent claims aim to influence Good Officer process – Govt

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The Government of Guyana said that it remains faithful to the Good Officers Process to resolve the long-standing border controversy between Guyana and Venezuela amid new claims being made by Venezuelan authorities.

Norwegian diplomat; Dag Halvor Nylander

Regional and local media reports indicate that Venezuela’s Energy and Petroleum Commission is contending that Guyana violated the Geneva agreement of 1966 and Article 10 of the Bolivarian Constitution of Venezuela with its oil exploration within the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana.

In a report in a Venezuelan newspaper, El Nacional, the Commission claims that the area being explored by ExxonMobil and its partners was declared Venezuelan territory under the 1966 Agreement.

According to GINA, Minister of State Joseph Harmon in response to questions from the media at today’s post-Cabinet press briefing said that he believes that statements that are made by Venezuelan authorities are meant to influence the process.

The Minister added that Guyana remains committed to seeing the resolution of the matter, GINA said.

“We are very faithful to our commitment under this arrangement, we would not wish anything to be done to derail that process,” Minister Harmon said.

Last month, the United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres, announced the appointment of a Norwegian diplomat, Dag Halvor Nylander as his personal Representative in the Good Offices Process on the border controversy.

The Geneva Agreement of February 17, 1966 saw Guyana and Venezuela referring to the Secretary-General for a decision to settle the controversy that had arisen as the result of the Venezuelan contention that the Arbitral Award of 1899 about the frontier between Venezuela and what is now Guyana, is null and void.

If the dispute is not resolved by the end of the year, the UN Secretary General will choose the International Court of Justice (ICJ) as the next means of settlement. “We’ve always said that there is an agreement and therefore it should be dealt with by the International Court,” Minister Harmon was quoted by GINA as saying.

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