President Maduro: Meeting With Guyanese President a Victory for Dialogue and Peace

Orinoco Tribune, December 16, 2023 —

The president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, stated that the High-Level Dialogue Commission installed to deal with the territorial controversy over Essequibo between Venezuela and Guyana represents “a victory for dialogue, diplomacy, and peace.” He made this comment a few hours after the end of his historic meeting with Guyanese President Mohamed Irfaan Ali, held in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

After arriving at the Simón Bolívar International Airport in Maiquetía, in the state of La Guaira, on Thursday, December 14, President Maduro said that the meeting between Venezuela and Guyana guarantees “peace for our people, who believe in the truth, and who are always willing to defend it.”

President Maduro thanked the prime minister of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and pro tempore president of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), Ralph Gonsalves, and the prime minister of Dominica and president of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), Roosevelt Skerrit, for their efforts in bringing about the rapprochement between Guyana and Venezuela.

He also thanked CELAC, the Deputy Foreign Minister of Honduras Gerardo Torres Zelaya, Foreign Minister of Colombia Álvaro Leyva, and Celso Amorim, special envoy of the president of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

“It was a fruitful, intense day, at times very tense, where we were able to speak the truth,” the Venezuelan president added.

“We have taken a historic and giant step to return to the path of legality, dialogue, and peace,” he stressed. “This is our path, it will always be our path for the defense of our historical cause [over the Essequibo] and the truth of Venezuela.”

The High-Level Dialogue Commission, the creation of which was announced in the joint statement signed by the presidents of both countries, establishes that any controversy between Venezuela and Guyana will be resolved in accordance with international law, including the Geneva Agreement signed on February 17, 1966.

The incorporation of the 1966 Geneva Agreement is an important victory for Venezuela, given that in recent years Guyana has tried hard to avoid any reference to this international agreement.

President Maduro also thanked the President Irfaan Ali of Guyana for his candor and willingness to engage in dialogue on all the issues that were addressed directly in the meeting. “I am satisfied to have been face to face with him, as I wanted it for a long time,” President Maduro said.

“It has been worth defending the truth of Venezuela, raising the flag of truth, raising our historical cause, and applying the Bolivarian Peace Diplomacy to the path of dialogue and understanding to resolve this historical controversy,” he added.

The joint statement of Argyle, signed in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines on Thursday, December 14, establishes that the High-Label Dialogue Commission should present results of its work to both presidents within three months, with another binational presidential meeting will be held within three months in Brazil.

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