France backs ICJ process in resolving Essequibo border controversy 

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Guyana engaged in talks with representatives from France as part of ongoing discussions concerning Guyana’s forthcoming tenure on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC). Foreign Secretary, Robert Persaud recently convened a meeting with Mohamed Bouabdallah, Head of Political Affairs Department at the United Nations Directorate of the French Foreign Ministry, in Georgetown, according to the Guyana government’s information arm. 

The discussions primarily centered on Security Council matters and Guyana’s agenda for its impending term on the Council, slated to commence in January 2024. Both nations reiterated the fundamental importance of upholding international law and respecting the sovereignty of all member states, aligning with the principles enshrined in the United Nations Charter.

Significant attention was directed towards Venezuela’s upcoming referendum and the assertive stances emanating from Caracas, with Guyana offering an update to the French delegation on the matter. France reportedly reiterated its steadfast backing for the International Court of Justice (ICJ) mechanism to address the border controversy, emphasizing the need for adherence to this framework.

During the meeting, the Foreign Secretary underscored Guyana’s key focal points for its tenure on the Council, notably emphasizing climate and food security as pivotal elements impacting peace and security globally.

Both Guyana and France expressed mutual intent to collaborate closely, not only on priority areas but also on crucial global issues, including the Israel-Palestine conflict, Russia’s incursion into Ukraine, and the Haiti crisis. They also acknowledged the interconnected nature of peacebuilding and peacekeeping efforts.

Bouabdallah conveyed France’s full support for Guyana’s mandate on the Council, acknowledging a shared objective to enhance the Council’s effectiveness. France pledged its commitment to collaborative efforts with Guyana, emphasizing the importance of aligning Council actions with the principles laid out in the UN Charter.

Guyana’s election as a non-permanent member of the UNSC on June 6 will see the nation serve a two-year term from January 1, 2024, to December 31, 2025.

The Security Council, under the UN Charter, plays a crucial role in maintaining global peace and security.

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