Venezuela’s claim has “no grounds” – British envoy


By Jomo Paul

British High Commissioner, James Gregory Quinn. [iNews' Photo]
British High Commissioner, James Gregory Quinn. [iNews’ Photo]
[] – British High Commissioner to Guyana, James Gregory Quinn has dismissed Venezuela’s most recent claim on Guyana’s oil rich Essequibo Coast, stating that it lacks solid grounds.

Venezuela’s President Nicholas Maduro on May 27 signed a decree that now claims an entire portion of Guyana’s territory into the Atlantic Ocean and includes the Stabroek Block where a significant portion of oil was recently discovered by US oil giant, ExxonMobil.

Guyana’s Government via the Foreign Affairs Ministry has since responded, labelling the most recent claim by Venezuela as a “flagrant violation of International laws,” deeming the decree illegal.

In an invited comment to iNews, Quinn made a similar statement pointing out that “the UK is clear that the Venezuela-Guyana land border is, and should be, as agreed under the 1899 Arbitration Agreement.”

Quinn contended that the 1966 Geneva Agreement did not change that adding “indeed Article V(2) of that agreement states: ‘No new claim, or enlargement of an existing claim, to territorial sovereignty … shall be asserted while this Agreement is in force, nor shall any claim whatsoever be asserted otherwise than in the Mixed Commission.’

Given these international agreements, Quinn says the claim is baseless.

“Connected to this we see no grounds in international law which would justify recent Venezuelan claims to what we consider to be Guyanese territorial waters,” the High Commissioner stated.

The Guyana government in a statement noted that any attempt by Venezuela to impose the decree will be “vigorously resisted” adding that the government will spare no effort to bring the issue to the international limelight.

“The Cooperative Republic of Guyana is concerned that the said decree disregards International Law, constitutes a threat to regional peace and security and breaches the Geneva Agreement of 1966. It is therefore imperative that Venezuela adheres to the principles of International Law in seeking to delineate its maritime boundaries with neighbouring countries pending actual delimitations,” the statement from the government read.




  1. Does Guyana have valid grounds to be awarding oil exploration rights on waters which have not been delimited? There is a Treaty the parties signed to solve the problem, but Guyana just doesn’t want to recognize it, that’s the problem. If Guyana does not want Venezuela to say some waters are theirs, then why is Guyana drawing lines and awarding concessions on waters that she knows can be claimed by Venezuela? It seems that for Guyana this is just a game. Maybe Guyana needs Venezuela to send some battleships to those waters to realize is not nice to draw maritime frontier lines withouth consent from its west neighbor.

  2. Can venesuls afford to explore fof oil in that region this greed need to vanish and venesula need to love his neighbour and offer help

  3. Ref, Venezuela’s Idiotic Rulers’ Gambit.

    Nicholas Maduro is using this so-called claim of Guyana’s territory as a political distraction, from the Internal Economic Crisis facing his people.

    His method is to distract them from the Real Economic Issues.

    And hopefully, buy him some time to come up with some other lie.


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