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Prime Minister, Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips and Venezuela’s Ambassador to Guyana, His Excellency Carlos Amador Perez Silva on Tuesday discussed ways of enhancing bilateral relations between the neighbouring countries. Prime Minister, Brigadier (Ret’d) Mark Phillips and Venezuela’s Ambassador to Guyana, His Excellency Carlos Amador Perez Silva at the meeting on Tuesday
Prime Minister Phillips indicated that Guyana is ready to improve relations, within the construct of respect for Guyana’s sovereignty.
This is particularly significant since Guyana took Venezuela before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over the border controversy between the two countries.
In 2015, Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro had withdrawn the country’s Ambassador to Guyana after Exxon found oil in Guyana’s waters. Eventually, this decision was reversed.
Venezuela claims Essequibo as its own, despite the 1899 arbitral award confirming Guyana’s sovereignty, which is accepted by the international community. Matters escalated in 2021, when Maduro issued a presidential decree reinforcing his country’s illegal claim to Guyana’s Essequibo region.
In the wake of Maduro’s decree, there was condemnation from all corners including from President Ali, then Opposition Leader Joseph Harmon and even the United States.
Nevertheless, the Prime Minister assured the Ambassador that Guyana would honour its obligation under international humanitarian laws, concerning refugees to the country, and stated that Guyana would continue to provide healthcare, food, and shelter and look to integrate children into the education system.
Ambassador Silva said that the courtesy visit was “very important” to enhance relations between the two countries. “The intention of the two Governments is to advance communication and cooperation as much as we can.”
Discussions also centred on bilateral security cooperation, especially in relation to transnational crimes and criminal networks that pose threats to the security of both countries.
The officials also spoke about economic development between the private sectors of the two countries. Ambassador Silva was accredited in April of 2022.