By Jomo Paul
[www.inewsguyana.com] – Foreign Affairs Minister Carl Greenidge has criticized the Venezuelan government for recent remarks surrounding the Guyana/Venezuela border controversy which recently resurfaced after the South American giant made another claim at Guyana’s oil rich territory.
Venezuela on Tuesday, June 09 demanded that Guyana halt oil exploration being carried out by ExxonMobil Corporation in disputed offshore territory in the Stabroek Bloc. In a statement issued, Venezuela said that the Guyana government overreacted over the decree that was issued on May 26 by President, Nicolas Maduro.
“Venezuela regrets that an administrative rule directed to organize, with the assistance of the new technologies of information, daily supervision and maritime security within the framework of its unlimited jurisdiction and constitutional exercise which nothing can affect the Cooperative Republic of Guyana – will be exploited to shock and trying to create an artificial crisis, inventing irrational situations against a brother country like Venezuela, using a highly offensive language”, the Venezuelan government said.
However, Greenidge, in a statement at Parliament on Wednesday, June 10, says that the decree “flies in the face of all international laws,” adding that Guyana is now aware of Venezuela’s huge appetite for territory.
He explained that the decree authorities Venezuela navy to secure the area.
“It mandates and authorizes the Venezuelan navy to secure the area and prevents any company from exploiting the resources” said Greenidge, adding that it is a “baseless and shameless and attempt at usurping Guyana’s territory…the decree cannot be considered an act of sovereignty.”
The Foreign Affairs Minister made it clear that Guyana will not waiver in response to the illegal claim. Greenidge made his comments even while Venezuela’s Ambassador was sitting just two rows behind him.
“Let it be clear that our response to what can only be described as territorial aggrandizement….efforts at Getting Venezuela to do the right and legal thing has to date proved futile,” he stated.
The Minister also pointed out that CARICOM and the Commonwealth have been duly apprised of the recent developments in the decades old dispute.
He indicated too that “other steps are being taken to ensure that Guyana’s sovereignty in any way…it is time to end the cycle…a definitive solution has to be found.”
Greenidge also claims that the Geneva Agreement of 1966 remains the best hope for “keeping the situation from going totally out of control” adding that Guyana stands ready to enter into dialogue with its neighbour.