Guyana’s VP seeks cooperation to tackle illicit weapons trade

Guyana’s Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs Carl B. Greenidge addresses a meeting to promote the elimination of nuclear weapons, during the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 26, 2018 at U.N. headquarters.
Associated Press / Bebeto Matthews

Vice President and Minister of Foreign Affairs Carl Greenidge, in his statement to 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly, said, for Guyana, and the wider Caribbean, the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons and their associated ammunition poses one of the most serious threats to human security and sustainable development.

Min. Greenidge, in his early morning presentation on Friday September 28, said international drug trafficking, transnational organized crime, unregulated cyber space, and the illicit trade in small arms and light weapons divert resources, that could otherwise be invested in critical areas.

“We believe that with effective international cooperation and assistance, small countries like Guyana can tackle this illicit trade and ultimately create safer communities, safer countries and regions, and a safer world,” said the diplomat.

Greenidge who represented President David A. Granger, who forgo the UNGA to focus on upcoming Local Elections, told the body, that adherence to the cardinal principles of the sovereign equality of States, respect for sovereignty and territorial integrity to States, and the peaceful resolution of disputes, are the most effective guarantees of peace.

“You will no doubt be aware of the controversy that has arisen between Guyana and its neighbor, the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela over the latter’s contention that the Arbitral Award of 1899 that settled the boundaries between the two countries is null and void, noted Min. Greenidge, who reminded Secretary General Guterres of his January 2018 mandate under the 1966 Geneva Agreement to referring the matter to the International Court of Justice, that is binding.

“As a responsible member of the global community, Guyana seeks peace not only in our region, but throughout the world where the scourge of war and conflict are obstacle to development.”

Min. Greenidge who saluted the memory of former Secretary-General Kofi Annan, whom he called a servant of the peoples of the world and whose dedication to the global community was epitomized in a lifetime selfless services to the UN, said Guyana welcomes the measures being taken to reposition the United Nations Development System in order to better align its functioning with the goals set out in the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.

Recognizing that women and girls constitute more than half the world’s population and the underutilization of their potential that represents a serious loss of resources in the global effort to promote human development, Min. Greenidge said Guyana is trying to ensure that the management of this development is undertaken with women and girls fully represented at the helm of decision making.

“We applaud the steps taken by the Secretary-General to ensure parity in the appointment of senior managers, including Resident Coordinators of the organization, including resident coordinators in the field, said Min. Greenidge.

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