Guyana seeking assurance from UN SG on Venezuela controversy deadline – President

President David Granger yesterday said that Guyana needs the assurance from UN Secretary General António Guterres that the deadline fixed for the referral of the Venezuela border controversy to the World Court will be met.

Granger was speaking with reporters yesterday during the lead up to the United Nations General Assembly in New York where he is scheduled to deliver an address.

According to a Ministry of the Presidency release yesterday, Granger met in New York with Commonwealth Secretary General, Baroness Patricia Scotland and raised the matter of the border controversy during their discussions.

President David Granger meeting with Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Patricia Scotland (Ministry of the Presidency photo)

He said that Guyana needs the assurance that Guterres will abide by the commitment that was made by former Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon to refer the matter to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) if an agreement is not reached between the two countries by December 2017. Ban had set the deadline after Guyana pressed for a juridical settlement of the controversy saying that decades of the UN Good Officer process had produced no results and had emboldened Venezuela in interfering with Guyana’s development. Venezuela on the other hand has been pressing for a continuation of the Good Officer process. Ban decided that the Good Officer process would continue for 2017 and if there was no progress the matter would be referred to the ICJ which is also known as the World Court.

“The present Secretary General, António Guterres has appointed the person, Mr. [Dag] Nylander who has been working between the capitals of Caracas and Georgetown and of course reporting back to the Secretary General. Here in New York, I am looking forward to meeting with Secretary General Mr. Gutteres to get an update on the work of Mr. Nylander and also to get the Secretary General’s view on how the legacy or testament of Mr. Ban Ki-moon can be actually implemented. I raised this matter with the Secretary General of the Commonwealth because over the last 50 years the Commonwealth has given its support on that territorial matter,” President Granger said.

Granger is slated to address the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly  today. He is listed as the fifth speaker on the agenda.










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