UN Envoy Meets With Guyana, Venezuela on Border Dispute

By: Caribbean Journal Staff - October 22, 2013

Above: the Essequibo River

By the Caribbean Journal staff

A United Nations Envoy has presented a plan to resolve the longstanding border dispute between Venezuela and Guyana.

The dispute involves the Essequibo region, which has been administered by Guyana since 1899 but which is claimed by Venezuela. The dispute resurfaced in 2012, when Guyana asked the United Nations to extend its continental shelf.

According to Norman Girvan, the Personal Representative of UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon on the dispute, he, Guyana Foreign Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett and Venezuela Foreign Minister Elias Jaua had “very productive separate meetings” on the dispute.

The UN said the Ministers emphasized their “excellent bilateral relations” and that the two sides welcomed Girvan’s initiative, which would involve a series of meetings “to move the process forward over the coming months.”

“He looks forward to providing the Ministers with suggestions in the coming weeks, and discussing them with each of the Foreign Ministers in the near future,” a UN spokesperson said in a note released Monday.

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