TT told to be mindful of “untrustworthy” Maduro

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TT told to be mindful of “untrustworthy” Maduro

Guyana’s vice president Bharrat Jagdeo says Trinidad and Tobago needs to be careful with Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, as he and his regime cannot be trusted.

He made the comment in light of T&T’s deal with Venezuela concerning the Dragon Gas Field.

Speaking at a media briefing in Guyana on Thursday, Jagdeo said, “Maduro and his regime—they’re not trustworthy, they’re not trustworthy and Trinidad would have to be extremely cautious in engaging them. They’re not trustworthy.”

Jagdeo said if Maduro pursues his “crazy plans” further and “miscalculates again,” Guyana will be pushing for sanctions again. Jagdeo said he thought Maduro got some reprieve on that issue with T&T because Caricom wanted—at T&T’s request—to see the development take place.

“So he got that reprieve there, but it’s not going to be business as usual if he allows himself to be misguided again and does anything that goes against the ICJ ruling,” he said.

Jagdeo’s comments come as Caricom leaders prepare to hold an emergency meeting Friday on the border issue. There is also a meeting on the matter by the United Nations Security Council.

He said Guyana has been fortunate in having a lot of of regional partners in Caricom and Latin America who’ve been robust in criticism of Venezuela but want peace.

Jagdeo said Guyana was pleased the UN Security Council took up the matter urgently, and the council will have the ICJ’s full ruling and measures, including for Venezuela to refrain from any step that would alter the border.

“We expect the council to deal with this matter swiftly,” he added.

He believes every council member, including China and Russia, will support the provisional measures of the ICJ, which is a UN body.

“We simply want Venezuela to comply with the ICJ—that the status quo not be altered until the substantive issue is determined, but we’ll work with all our partners, including the US, to ensure that if Venezuela defies the ICJ ruling and they infringe on our territory, or try to alter the status quo, then we just have to defend our country with our partners.”

He said Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro is pushing against not just international law, but almost the entire international community.