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– “No self-respecting nation would indulge in talks with Venezuela under those circumstances” Ralph Ramkarran, a veteran politician who is quite au fait with the long history of the Guyana/Venezuela territorial dispute,China Jerseys Cheap, believes that Venezuela has set itself in a position that allows it to literally starve Guyana into submission.Ralph RamkarranOn May 27, 2015, Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro issued a decree, extending Venezuela’s claim to Guyana’s territorial waters. A map which was issued, accompanying the decree, shows that the claim includes the area where the US giant oil company, ExxonMobil is currently drilling for oil.Foreign Affairs Minister, Carl Greenidge, had revealed that the decree indicates the potential use of force to deprive Guyana its territory.In his most recent column, published on his website, Ramkarran stated that Venezuela’s decree means that Guyana could potentially have no access to ship its exports or receive its imports without Venezuela’s permission. In this regard, Ramkarran said the fact that the Bolivarian government has given its warships power to stop and search vessels within Guyana’s maritime area.Ramkarran noted that in 2013, Venezuela had seized a vessel, the Teknik Perdana, and said that “further aggression against Guyana is to be expected.” The politician said that with such control over Guyana’s maritime territory, Venezuela has acquired the power to starve Guyana into submission, if not to retard its development.”Ramkarran noted the fact that Venezuela is now inviting Guyana to talk, “to go cap in hand, on bended knee.” He said that in light of the current circumstances surrounding the moves that Venezuela made, “No self-respecting nation will indulge (in talks).”Ramkarran, like Minister Greenidge, said that Venezuela’s claim violates the Geneva Agreement which Venezuela had signed with Guyana and the United Nations. He said that it also violates international law and threatens the peace, security and stability of the Region.Ramkarran cited that Article V (2) of the Geneva Agreement states that “no new claim, or enlargement of an existing claim to territorial sovereignty in those territories shall be asserted while this Agreement is in force, nor shall any claim whatsoever be asserted otherwise than in the Mixed Commission while that Commission is in being.”With that Article cited, Ramkarran pointed out that Venezuela’s claim to Guyana’s Atlantic front is a ‘new claim or enlargement of an existing claim’ and therefore violates the Geneva Agreement.He said that Venezuela has never cited any provision in the Geneva Agreement that prohibits, or gives it power to object to, foreign investment in territory which is the subject of the Agreement or in Guyana’s maritime space.The veteran politician added that the heirs to “Hugo Chavez, Venezuela’s late transformative leader, have damaged the credibility of his legacy. They are attempting to take by force, and at Guyana’s expense, the Atlantic outlet they have always craved and with it Guyana’s newly discovered petroleum resources.”Ramkarran noted that it was Chavez who, in 2004 in Guyana, declared that the border controversy was a legacy of colonialism and was the subject of imperialist intrigue to create enmity between Guyana and Venezuela. Ramkarran reminded that during that successful and popular visit, Chavez announced that Venezuela would no longer object to the economic development of Essequibo.The former government official said that Chavez’s policy resulted in mutually beneficial economic relations, but Chavez’s policy has now been abandoned by the Venezuelan Government and military.“Beset by economic problems and pressured by its military, Venezuela has chosen to victimize Guyana to detract from rising internal dissent. It does this by seeking to perpetuate the same legacy of colonialism and imperialism, and big power tactics against the weak that Chavez denounced. Venezuela’s decree by a supposedly progressive government against a small, peaceful and friendly neighbor is reminiscent of the worst acts of hostility and aggression against Guyana committed by earlier governments, whose rule Chavez had condemned,Wholesale Football Jerseys,” said Ramkarran.He added that nevertheless, “Venezuela is now inviting Guyana to talk,Wholesale Authentic Jerseys, to go cap in hand,Cheap NFL Jerseys, on bended knee. (But), no self-respecting nation will indulge.”Ramkarran said that Former Foreign Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett had invited Venezuela for talks on the issue since 2011 without any success. “The only subject, if discourse is to take place, should be the withdrawal of its unlawful decree and settlement by judicial means of Venezuela’s contention that the Arbitral Award of 1899 is null and void, as provided for in the Geneva Agreement,” said Ramkarran.The veteran politician, who was appointed Guyana’s facilitator to the Good Officer Process, under the People’s Progressive Party/Civic Government said that “The time for good offices, negotiation or mediation has been brought to an end by Venezuela’s hostile act…Venezuela action is not merely greed for our resources, even though Venezuela already has the largest oil deposits in the world, which it cannot fully exploit. It is more sinister. It needs a diversion from its desperate economic and political crises that a claim of this magnitude against Guyana can provide. It needs to satisfy or appease its military’s militancy over and appetite for Guyana’s territory. It is a cynical ploy, unknown in relations between countries in this modern era.”Ramkarran said that the objective of intimidating potential investors in the forestry, mining and infrastructural areas east of the Essequibo River was and is also to pressure Guyana to surrender its territory. That having failed,China NBA Jerseys, it now brings additional pressure by claiming Guyana’s maritime space.The politician also pointed out that Venezuela seeks to dissuade investors so as to ensure that Guyana remains poor and undeveloped. In this way it hopes that Guyana will eventually succumb to its threats.“Guyana must no longer accept that Venezuela has, or can ever have,WBC Jerseys, while the controversy is maintained by Venezuela, good or honourable intentions, whatever the nature of its government or its platitudes about peace and friendship. Old hands in foreign affairs had been cautious all along about Chavez’s overtures. They believed him but figured that he would not have been president forever. What would happen thereafter, they asked? That question has now been answered.”(Abena Rocklciffe)