Venezuela to reopen ABC islands borders

~ Resolution must still be approved ~

ARUBA–During a meeting in Aruba between the countries Aruba, Curaçao, the Netherlands (also on behalf of Bonaire) and Venezuela on Friday evening, agreement was reached in principle to lift the trade ban with the so-called ABC islands imposed by the neighbouring South American country due to smuggling practices.

As a result of this effective border closure several citizens of the Dutch Caribbean remained stuck in Venezuela without being able to return home. Mainly for this reason it became an urgent topic also at the kingdom-level.

According to sources in Oranjestad, the talks were not easy, but all parties had one objective, which was to resolve the situation.

Afterwards Aruban Prime Minister Evelyn Croes-Wever indicated that the meeting, though intense, had been very positive and constructive. It ended in a positive sphere.

“Several topics were discussed, which covered all the concerns of the parties present at the meeting. We discussed everything that led to Venezuela’s decision.

“We talked about the products that are being smuggled from Venezuela to our islands. We also agreed on rules and regulations that apply to import and export for our countries,” said the prime minister.

She added the topic of stranded passengers in Venezuela had been a top priority, and it was agreed that these citizens should be able to return to the islands as soon as possible.

All parties must now review and discuss a draft resolution on joint actions with their respective government and parliament. They will meet again on January 18 to try and sign the final document.

Source: The Daily Herald