Maduro considers the meeting with Ali a victory and recognizes that "it has been worth it" to bet on diplomacy
The president of Cuba points to his participation "to contribute to the solution of conflicts"
The presidents of Guyana and Venezuela, Mohamed Irfaan Ali and Nicolás Maduro, agreed this Thursday not to use force "under any circumstances" in the framework of the Essequibo territorial dispute, which had escalated tensions between both countries in recent weeks.
"Guyana and Venezuela, directly or indirectly, will not threaten or use force against each other under any circumstances, including those arising from any dispute existing between both States (...) Any dispute between the two States will be resolved in accordance with International Law including the 1966 Geneva Agreement," reads a joint statement.
Ali and Maduro have agreed to refrain, "whether in word or deed, from escalating any conflict or disagreement arising from any dispute" bilaterally, and have promised to cooperate "to avoid incidents on the ground that lead to tensions." They have also agreed to immediately establish a joint commission with the foreign ministers and technicians of both parties, whose progress will be presented to the leaders within a period of three months.
In the event that an incident occurs, they will have to communicate it to the opposing party, to the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), to the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), and to the president of Brazil, who has acted as mediator, "to contain it, reverse it and prevent it from recurring."
In this sense, they have agreed that the leaders of CARICOM - the Prime Minister of Dominica, Roosevelt Skerrit - and CELAC - the Prime Minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Ralph Gonsalves -, and the Brazilian president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, continue to "deal with the matter as interlocutors", while the UN Secretary General, António Guterres, will continue as an observer.
Both parties have committed themselves "to the pursuit of good neighborliness, peaceful coexistence and the unity of Latin America and the Caribbean," while they have agreed to continue dialogue on "any other pending matter of mutual importance for the two countries."
Likewise, they have taken "note of Guyana's assertion that it is committed to the process and procedures of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) for the resolution of the border dispute," as well as "Venezuela's assertion of its lack of consent and non-recognition" of the ICJ and its jurisdiction.
After the meeting between both leaders, upon his return to Caracas, Maduro described the meeting with his Guyanese counterpart as a "victory" and noted that it was a "concrete" demonstration of the conviction of a "people who love peace, "He believes in the truth and is always willing to defend it."
"It has been worth defending the truth of Venezuela, raising the flag of truth, raising our historical reasons and seeking with Bolivarian diplomacy the path of understanding to channel this controversy through the path of dialogue," he stressed.
However, he acknowledged that the round of talks became "tense at times", but he assured that they were able to "speak the truth" and present each other's points of view regarding Essequibo.
"I felt very satisfied to be able to be face to face, as I wanted, with the president of Guyana," he expressed. However, he thanked Ali "for his frankness and willingness to engage in broad dialogue on all the issues that they have been able to address directly."
In this context, the president of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel, has pointed to the participation of the Cuban authorities "to contribute to the resolution of conflicts", as he has indicated through his profile on the social network Twitter.
"Cuba welcomes the conversations between the presidents of Venezuela and Guyana. Countries and actors involved are aware of Cuba's actions to contribute to the resolution of conflicts in Our America, how we have acted in this case according to the requests of each party," he said. manifested.
For his part, the Secretary of the United States Department of State, Antony Blinken, has reaffirmed the US Government's position that the land border "must be respected unless the parties reach a new agreement or a competent legal body decides otherwise." contrary".
Blinken made these statements in a conversation with his Brazilian counterpart, Mauro Vieira, to whom he thanked Brazil's "diplomatic leadership" "in the search for a peaceful resolution of the dispute between Venezuela and Guyana over the Essequibo region."
Maduro and Ali met this Thursday in Kingstown, the capital of the Caribbean island of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, to try to ease tensions over the conflict over Essequibo, a Guyanese territory that Caracas claims as its own. Tensions between the countries increased after the Venezuelan government held a referendum on the annexation of the region.
After the approval of the popular consultation, Maduro announced several measures such as the creation of the state of Guayana Esequiba or the publication of a new official map with this integrated territory, among others. The day before, the president of Guyana assured that his Venezuelan counterpart is "a criminal" who "acts recklessly" due to his recent actions and statements.
The territorial conflict dates back to the 19th century, when an 1899 ruling, defended from Georgetown, stipulated that Venezuela renounced Essequibo, although it later retracted this. For its part, Caracas relies on the 1966 Geneva Agreement signed between the United Kingdom (former colonial power of Guyana) and Venezuela, in which they recognized Essequibo as a disputed territory.