25th of February, 2022. International News. VenezuelaLast updated: February 25, 2022 at 18:19 pm
Editor’s Note – These statements were made in Venezuela’s parliament on Thursday, 17th of February, 2022 – about one week before Russia’s attack on Ukraine. Russia, a strong ally of Venezuela, has entered into military mode, and it is unclear if this new development will cause Venezuela to become more aggressive.
On Thursday, 17th of February, 2022, the National Assembly of Venezuela approved an agreement to ratify the rights of sovereignty over the Essequibo Region, the subject of a territorial dispute with Guyana.
The Venezuelan Legislature reaffirmed the unrestricted adherence to the Geneva Agreement of 1966 on the occasion of the 56th anniversary of its signing as the only valid legal instrument to settle the dispute over what Venezuelans refer to as the “Guayana Esequiba” in order to amicably reach a practical and satisfactory settlement for both parties.
Likewise, the parliament of Venezuela expressed its supports for the actions undertaken by the National Executive to defend the sovereign rights of the Bolivarian Republic over the claimed territory.
During the Parliamentary session on Thursday, 17th of February, 2022, Deputy Hermann Escarra questioned whether the International Court of Justice (ICJ) was given jurisdiction in this controversy as a result of the appeal presented unilaterally by Guyana before the judicial body.
Earlier, the government of Venezuela advocated a negotiated solution to the territorial dispute with the neighboring country and ratified the full validity of the Geneva Agreement which Venezuelans believe has regulated the dispute between Caracas and Georgetown since 1966 in order to reach a practical and satisfactory solution for both nations.
The Bolivarian Executive reiterated his “unassailable conviction for peace, friendship, and genuine cooperation between brother countries.”
He also underlined his willingness to maintain efforts to achieve a friendly negotiation which leads to a true, fair, and equitable solution to the dispute, and restore historical truth.
Likewise, he called on Guyana to refrain from privileging the positions of third parties that he believes may want to take advantage of the territorial dispute to favor geopolitical and geo-economical interests.
On repeated occasions, the Venezuelan authorities had expressed their rejection of the intentions of Guyana to grant validity to the Arbitration Award of 1899 through which 159,000 square kilometers of territory west of the Essequibo River were granted to the control of the United Kingdom – the owner of the then British Guiana.
Venezuela had long protested the arbitration under considerations that there were vices of nullity in the decision. However, according to Venezuela, it was not until 1962 that tangible progress was made after the discovery of documents that compromised its legality.
The acceptance of the Venezuelan demand by the United Nations Organization led to the signing of the Geneva Agreement on February 17, 1966 – according to which the region would remain under the control of Guyana, which received its independence that same year.
However, according to Venezuela, the treaty recognized Venezuela’s claim to sovereignty over the Essequibo and forced the signatory states to find a conclusive, peaceful, and honorable solution for both parties through political negotiations.