Press Release on the meeting held on 25 September 2017 between His Excellency President David Granger and the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr Antonio Guterres
His Excellency President David Granger met on Monday, 25 September 2017 with the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Mr Antonio Guterres, on the margins of the 72nd session of the United Nations General Assembly. The President was accompanied by Foreign Minister Carl Greenidge, Director-General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ms. Audrey Waddell, Permanent Representative of Guyana to the United Nations, Ambassador Michael Ten-Pow, Legal Advisers to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Sir Shridath Ramphal and Mr Payam Akhavan, and Head of the Multilateral and Global Affairs Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Troy Torrington. The Secretary-General’s team included the Chef de Cabinet in the Executive Office of the Secretary-General, Ms. Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti, the Personal Representative of the Secretary-General in the Good Offices process aimed at facilitating a solution to the controversy between Venezuela and Guyana, Ambassador Dag Nylander, The Legal Counsel of the United Nations, Under-Secretary-General Miguel de Serpa Soares, and Under-Secretary-General for General Assembly and Conference Management, Ms. Catherine Pollard.
The meeting reviewed the progress achieved to date in the Good Offices process that was launched earlier in the year to seek a solution to the controversy that has arisen as a result of the Venezuelan contention that the Arbitral Award that settled the boundary between British Guiana and Venezuela in 1899 was null and void. That process is still underway and His Excellency, President David Granger, took the opportunity to reaffirm Guyana’s commitment to continued cooperation with the Good Offices process until its conclusion at the end of 2017. President Granger also reiterated Guyana’s expectation that, in the absence of significant progress towards a settlement, the Secretary-General would refer the matter to the International Court of Justice for adjudication, as he had undertaken to do at the start of the Good Offices process. The Secretary-General for his part exhorted both parties to cooperate fully with his Personal Representative and to explore in good faith the possibilities of an agreement during the two months or so that remained in the mandate of his Personal Representative, Ambassador Dag Nylander of Norway.
An informal meeting between the Foreign Ministers of the two countries took place on the sidelines of the General Assembly and the Personal Representative of the Secretary-General is now seeking to facilitate a formal meeting between the two countries at the level of Ministers of Foreign Affairs in the coming weeks.