Venezuela has now detained an oil survey vessel in Guyana waters which has serious diplomatic implications and undertones. The key to the whole issue at this time is that Venezuela for all practical purposes ignored Guyana’s exclusive economic zone and instructed that the vessel switch off its engines and shut down its seismic equipment.
Venezuela is building up pressure on Guyana, with a threat to peace of this sub-region and we therefore strongly condemn these actions. The Burnham administration was infinitely more energetic when it comes to Venezuelan incursions than this administration.
On the 12th October 1966, a Guyanese mission discovered Venezuelan personnel occupying a portion of Ankoko Island in the Cuyuni River which is Guyanese territory. The Guyana government should energetically protest the interception by the Venezuelan ship and personnel in Guyana’s waters and request that immediate steps be taken by the Venezuelan government to guarantee that the survey vessel Teknik Perdana be returned to conduct its seismic survey and thus carry out the stipulations of the Geneva Agreement.
We the people of Guyana protest in the strongest terms this most recent act on the part of the Government of Venezuela. Further, we view the aforementioned act as a deliberate attempt by the Government of Venezuela to retard the economic development of Guyana through the intimidation of persons or organizations genuinely prepared to contribute to the development of Guyana and to assist in the advancement of the economic well-being of its people.