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Foreign affairs minister reiterates Guyana's territorial sovereignty


Caribbeannewsnow.com
Last Update: Feb 17, 2010

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (GINA) -- Recent reports emanating from Suriname of presidential instructions under the previous Surinamese government to invade Guyana’s territory (namely the New River Triangle) have prompted Minister of Foreign Affairs Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett to reiterate the tri-junction point...

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (GINA) -- Recent reports emanating from Suriname of presidential instructions under the previous Surinamese government to invade Guyana’s territory (namely the New River Triangle) have prompted Minister of Foreign Affairs Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett to reiterate the tri-junction point which clearly recognises the New River Triangle as being within the sovereign territory of Guyana.

Reading a brief statement in the National Assembly during the budget debate on Monday, Minister Rodrigues-Birkett said it is a well established fact that in 1936, the governments of the federative republic of Brazil, Great Britain and the Netherlands identified the tri-junction point at which the boundaries of British Guiana (now Guyana) Dutch Guiana (now Suriname) and Brazil meet.

“In spite of that conscious act, successive governments of Suriname have sought to illegally annex Guyana’s territory including by an unsuccessful armed invasion in 1969 that ended when the GDF expelled Surinamese military personnel from the area,” Minister Rodrigues Birkett said.

She describes the public statements currently being reported upon in the Surinamese press as confirmation that in the year 2000 when Suriname violated Guyana’s exclusive economic zone and forcibly removed the CGX rig from Guyana’s waters, the then Govt of Suriname also had formulated plans for the invasion of the New River Triangle.

“Such an act would have also been in breach of international law just as the tribunal that heard the maritime dispute between Guyana and Suriname ruled that the removal of the CGX rig by Suriname, constituted a threat of the use of force in breach of the UN convention on the laws of the sea, the UN charter and general international law,” Minister Rodrigues-Birkett said.

Given the confirmation of the stated hostile plans of Suriname in 2000, Minister Rodrigues-Birkett said she met with the Surinamese Ambassador in Georgetown and registered Guyana’s concerns not only of the admitted invasion instruction but also the failure of the current government to ‘reassure Guyanese and the international community that the use or threat of the use of force is not an option that Suriname currently embraces.’


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