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UK minister for the Americas, Caribbean and Overseas Territories to visit Guyana on Monday

  • David Rutley will meet president Ali to stress backing for Guyana following Venezuelan border claim.
  • Minister Rutley will discuss the situation with Ambassadors from key international partners.
  • Visit is the first by a G7 minister since Venezuelan referendum.

LONDON / GUYANA – The UK will on Monday 18 December 2023, reaffirm its support for Guyana on the first ministerial visit to the country from a G7 nation since the Venezuelan regime renewed its border claim on the Essequibo region.

“David Rutley, the British minister for the Americas, Caribbean and Overseas Territories, will meet president Mohamed Irfaan Ali and senior government and military officials to stress unequivocal backing for Guyana’s territorial integrity,” said a press release from Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, (FCDO). “The UK has welcomed talks between Nicolás Maduro and president Ali in St Vincent on 14 December, where the leaders pledged there would be no use of military force over the border issue.”

Guyana’s growth will not be paralyzed by Venezuela’s threats, says vice president Dr Jagdeo

Minister for the Americas, Caribbean and Overseas Territories, Rutley, said:

“I am in Guyana, a fellow Commonwealth member, to offer the UK’s unequivocal backing to our Guyanese friends. The border issue has been settled for over 120 years. Sovereign borders must be respected wherever they are in the world.

“We welcome the recent agreement by Venezuela in St Vincent to refrain from the use of force and any further escalation. The UK will continue to work with partners in the region, as well as through international bodies, to ensure the territorial integrity of Guyana is upheld.”

On 3 December the Venezuelan regime held a referendum asking voters to approve the incorporation of the Essequibo region of Guyana into Venezuela against the will of the people who live there.

The Essequibo region makes up two-thirds of Guyana’s territory. The border lines were settled by international arbitration in 1899.

During his visit, the minister will also meet ambassadors from the United States, Canada and the European Union to discuss international support for Guyana.

While in Georgetown, minister Rutley will hold talks with the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) secretary-general and meet business leaders to hear how they have been affected by the situation.

“Minister Rutley will also lay a wreath to honour five Guyanese service personnel killed in a recent helicopter crash,” FCDO advised.

Minister Rutley previously visited Guyana in March, when he was a passenger on board the inaugural direct British Airways flight from London and attended the launch of the British Chamber of Commerce.

“This is also the first ministerial visit to Guyana from a G7 nation since the Venezuelan regime renewed its border claim on the Essequibo region,” FCDO noted.



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