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Angry Guyana drops out of Suriname oil conference

April 8, 2014

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (AP) — A decades-long border dispute has prompted Guyana to angrily drop out of an oil and gas conference in neighboring Suriname.

The June conference was intended to showcase oil and gas exploration opportunities in the two countries on the northern edge of South America. But a map of the region circulated by Surinamese officials to promote the event has soured prospects for cooperation.

The map shows the New River Triangle as part of Suriname. Guyanese troops seized the area in 1969 and have occupied it ever since in a long-simmering point of contention between the two countries.

Guyana Natural Resources Minister Robert Persaud said Tuesday the conference map is a “violation of our territorial integrity.” Suriname has not responded to a diplomatic note of protest.

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