Opposition calls for ICJ intervention in resolving Venezuela’s border dispute

The Democratic Unitary Platform of Venezuela said the dispute of Venezuela and Guyana should be settled by International Court of Justice.

Opposition in Venezuela wants ICJ solution to border dispute. Image Credit: Facebook, Guyana Daily
Opposition in Venezuela wants ICJ solution to border dispute. Image Credit: Facebook, Guyana Daily

Caribbean: The opposition party in the nation of Venezuela, the Democratic Unitary Platform, said that the territorial dispute between Venezuela and Guyana should be settled by the International Court of Justice on Saturday, 30 December. In the statement, they also opposed the presence of a British warship on the coast of Guyana.

The leaders of the Democratic Unitary Platform said that Venezuela has all the legal documents to defend its claim on the region of Essequibo. These documents will be presented to the International Court of Justice as prooves.

After accepting the Arbitral Tribunal Award in 1899 for 60 years, Venezuela relied on a letter by a junior lawyer to the 1897 land border tribunal, which mentioned the alleged collaboration to deprive it of territory.

Maria Corina Machado, who is the face of the opposition for the next general election, said, “Venezuela needs its best professionals to contest the World Court case.”

The administration of the current President of the nation, Nicolas Maduro, does not recognise the UN legal body to resolve the issue over the 1899 Arbitral Tribunal Award that marked the Guyana-Venezuela land border.

The Maduro administration follows the 1966 Geneva Agreement and wants to use it only for bilateral negotiations to resolve the matter.

The UN Secretary-General brought the dispute to the International Court of Justice after Guyana gave up on the bilateral meetings.

The opposition said, “We demand the validity of the 1966 Geneva Agreement as the only instrument for a practical and satisfactory peaceful resolution to the conflict.”

They also added on the issue of the British ship, saying, “The Democratic Unitary Platform condemns this action and calls for its immediate withdrawal. We also ask both sides to reach agreements diplomatically.”

Brazil also opposed the presence of a British ship on Guyana in a statement on Friday and called both nations to return to the agreement of the Argyle Declaration. The agreement was signed by both nations for peace and dialogue by President Ali and President Maduro.

Even after the mutual understanding, It is seen that the Maduro administration is continuously presenting the region of Essequibo on its map and declaring it a military zone.

Venezuela also gave authority to its state oil and mining companies to operate in the region of Essequibo and asked Guyanese concessionaires to leave within three months.

The HMS Trent, a Batch 2 River-class offshore patrol vessel, arrived on the coast of Guyana on 29 December after British Minister for the Americas and the Caribbean, David Rutley, visited Guyana on 18 December.