Guyana stands its ground on New River Triangle battle with Suriname

Former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carolyn Rodrigues - Birkett.


Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carolyn Rodrigues - Birkett.
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carolyn Rodrigues – Birkett.

[] – Minister of Foreign Affairs, Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett has reiterated that Guyana’s position with regards the New River Triangle is very clear: the area is part of Guyana’s territory.

She said in 1936, the Federative Republic of Brazil, the Dutch Government at the time and British Guiana decided where the tri-junction point will be.

The Minister was at the time responding to the issue of Suriname’s claim that the area belongs to that country and statements attributed to Suriname’s Foreign Minister Winston Lackin who restated his country’s claim last week.

“If what is attributed to my Surinamese colleague is correct, then that is regrettable. Our two Border Commissions…on border matters between the two countries have been meeting and those meetings are progressing very well, and we look forward to a favourable outcome in the not so distant future,” Minister Rodrigues-Birkett stated.

She added that while border issues are not resolved overnight, both commissions have been working.

She pointed out too, that what is necessary is for all Guyanese citizens to be aware of the history of the matter, “to be aware of Guyana’s borders, to be aware of Guyana’s size and shape and I think most of them are; and in this case we are very clear. But we are a peace loving country, as well, and we have always adhered to the principle of resolving borders in a peaceful manner,” she insisted.

“We went to the Commission on the Laws of the Sea to resolve our maritime border with Suriname. Our bilateral discussions with Suriname through the border commission are aimed at resolving the matter consistent with international law. This is the approach we will take,” the Foreign Minister stated firmly.

Meanwhile on the Venezuela border issue, Minister Rodrigues-Birkett stated that an approach has to be made to the United Nations Secretary General regarding the process of selecting a Good Officer. It is hoped that this will result in the selection of someone approved by both countries and that the process will end in the not so distant future. The previous Good Officer Professor Norman Girvan died recently.

She also expressed the hope that discussions will soon re-commence on this issue.

[Extracted and Modified from GINA]



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