Tell us what it's going to take for you to return to Guyana.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Border Ruling Sparks Suriname Protests

For now I'm going to say that what we are looking at a case a former dictator making political hay. He won't get a thing out of this except maybe for more support within Suriname. If he somehow rises back to power, Suriname still gains nothing because the decision is legally binding on Suriname. What may suffer is the relationship between Guyana and Suriname, which was sacrificed for personal political gain as far as I am concerned.


Oct. 2, 2007, 8:08AM
Border Ruling Sparks Suriname Protests

By ARNY BELFOR Associated Press Writer
© 2007 The Associated Press

PARAMARIBO, Suriname — Suriname's top opposition figure rallied a few hundred protesters Monday to denounce a U.N. ruling that gave neighboring Guyana the greater share of an offshore oil basin.

Desi Bouterse, a former dictator who is now chairman of Suriname's main opposition party, received loud cheers as he greeted the crowd of some 500 people outside parliament, protesting a ruling last month by the U.N. International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.

"A government that does not take into account the interests of the people should not be allowed to rule," Bouterse said in a brief address to supporters.

Settlement of the long-running dispute between Guyana and Suriname is expected to bring a surge of exploration for oil and gas off their Atlantic coastlines and the presidents of both countries applauded the ruling. But the opposition in Suriname says it unfairly gave Guyana sovereignty over a larger area.

Protesters carried signs criticizing President Ronald Venetiaan, including one declaring "Stop the Traitors," and sang songs that were popular during Bouterse's seven-year rule in the 1980s. Some retired soldiers attended in their old military uniforms.

Inside parliament, Venetiaan presented the annual budget for the former Dutch colony on the northeast coast of South America.

The U.S. Geological Survey has estimated that the disputed area _ called the Guyana-Suriname Basin _ may hold recoverable oil reserves of roughly 15 billion barrels and gas reserves of 42 trillion cubic feet.

Bouterse seized power in a 1980 coup and ruled until international pressure forced him to step down in 1987, but he has kept a large following as an elected legislator.

He is scheduled to face trial on Nov. 30 for the 1982 killings of 15 political opponents of his military regime. Earlier this year, he said he accepted political responsibility for the deaths but denied involvement.

1 comment:

Lloyda said...

The part that gets me is that Veneetian knew that the decision was going to bring about some discontent in Suriname since unlike in the Guyana, the average Surinamese is very passionate about the border dispute...So he lied and told them that Suriname got 49 percent. So what the opposition party is doing in fact is ensuring that the people know that they suffered a loss and so as idiotic as his actions are, I am glad that they know that, "We ain giving up no mountain, we ain giving up no tree, we ain giving up no river that belong to we..."