UN Secretary-General Hails 'Statesmanship' in Efforts by Presidents of Equatorial Guinea and Gabon to Resolve Boundary Dispute

Feb 27, 2011, 23:00 ET from Republic of Equatorial Guinea

NEW YORK, Feb. 27, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- United Nations Secretary-General praised President Obiang Nguema Mbasogo of Equatorial Guinea and his counterpart, Ali Bongo Ondimba of Gabon, for "statesmanship" in their efforts to resolve a long-standing territorial dispute.

President Obiang met on February 25 with President Bongo at the United Nations (UN) headquarters at the invitation of the Secretary-General. The UN began mediating the dispute in 2004.

The two presidents reaffirmed their commitment to submit the dispute to the International Court of Justice with the goal of reaching a settlement as soon as possible.

Secretary-General Ban reported to the Security Council that the attitude of the presidents was "an important demonstration of statesmanship, on both sides."

He declared that the two nations would "have the full support of the United Nations as they work together to find a solution."

The dispute between Equatorial Guinea and its neighbor centers around three islands in Corisco Bay, in an area of petroleum and natural gas deposits.  The two countries have a long-standing commitment to resolve the matter amicably and to exploit the area's resources jointly until they reach a settlement.

In a joint communique issued following the meeting of the two leaders and Secretary-General Ban, the two countries agreed to meet again in Geneva on March 29-30 to resolve remaining issues.

About Equatorial Guinea

The Republic of Equatorial Guinea (Republica de Guinea Ecuatorial) is the only Spanish-speaking country in Africa, and one of the smallest nations on the continent. In the late-1990s, American companies helped discover the country's oil and natural gas resources, which only within the last five years began contributing to the global energy supply. Equatorial Guinea is now working to serve as a pillar of stability and security in its region of West Central Africa. The country will host the 2011 Summit of the African Union. For more information, visit http://www.guineaecuatorialpress.com.

This has been distributed by Qorvis Communications, LLC on behalf of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea. More information on this relationship is on file at the United States Department of Justice, Washington, DC.

SOURCE Republic of Equatorial Guinea