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External Affairs Minister Confident Region Will Remain A Zone Of Peace


Saint Lucia’s External Affairs Minister, Alva Baptiste, is confident that the region will remain a zone of peace, declaring that he never feared the use of force in the border controversy between Guyana and Venezuela.

“There is no doubt in my mind that we have dedicated our region as a zone of peace, and it shall remain a zone of peace,” the Laborie MP asserted.

Baptiste spoke following last week’s historic summit involving President Dr. Irfaan Ali of Guyana and Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela.

The summit, which Caribbean Community (CARICOM) leaders attended, occurred at a time of heightened tensions over the Guyana-Venezuela border issue.

A joint declaration agreed, among other things, that both countries would not directly or indirectly threaten or use force against one another.

“Not for once I had any doubt that it was within our sphere of competence to bring resolution to this particular issue,” Saint Lucia’s External Affairs Minister told reporters on Monday.

He noted that Saint was ‘very close’ to Venezuela and an integral member of the CARICOM family, which is ‘extremely close’ to Venezuela.

“If we have an open line with Venezuela and a member of CARICOM, we know how to use the tool of diplomacy to resolve our issues,” Baptiste told reporters on the margins of Monday’s regular Cabinet meeting.

He explained on that basis, he had no doubt or fear about any invasion or use of force.

“I was never concerned about that because I felt there was that understanding and there was that relationship in our region to permit a resolution without the use of force,” the Minister stated.

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  1. I am happy that the summit resulted in an amiable resolution to the Venezuela/ Guyana conflict. In as much as we want the region to be a zone of peace, there is no guarantee that in the future Venezuela will not move into the Esequibo region. This is a decades old conflict. We are friends of Venezuela because they have not been selfish in sharing their resources and oil revenue with the Caribbean region. However, Guyana needs to actively prepare for an invasion by Venezuela. They need to invest oil revenue in building and strengthening their military capacity to adequately respond to future threats.

  2. Can I tell you who the winner/winners are, it’s the OIL COMPANIES.
    They call the shots, they sit in their offices in TEXAS and on Wall STREET N.Y. watching their SHARES multiply. Venezuela was bluffing all along because of their failure to help their people and if they continue on these paths, internal revolution.
    It is to our advantage to shut-up, wont be any better under Guyana, I wouldn’t trust them one bit; when money is in question, corruption talks; who pays?


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