Presidents John Dramani Mahama and Alassane Ouattara have decided to engage in a process aimed at achieving cooperation between their countries as prescribed by the Special Chamber of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS).
At a meeting between the two leaders in Geneva, Switzerland, Monday, they agreed to not allow the maritime border dispute to mar relations between Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire.
The meeting was convened at the instance of a former United Nations Secretary General, Mr Kofi Annan, to discuss the dispute with the aim to prevent animosity and tension between the two neighbouring countries.
There were reports in sections of the international media yesterday that the Presidents of Cote d’Ivoire and Ghana had reached a deal in Geneva on a maritime border dispute that had frozen new oil drilling in a contested area.
However, a joint communiqué issued at the end of the meeting, a copy of which was mailed to the Daily Graphic, never mentioned any such deal.
The communiqué said, “Following the recent ruling by the Special Chamber of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea on a request for provisional measures, the two Presidents, true to the mutual vision of regional integration, have decided to engage in a process aimed at achieving cooperation as prescribed by the ITLOS.”
It said the delimitation of the border remained the objective of the parties.
At the close of the meeting, the two Presidents reiterated their commitment to promote discussions that favoured regional integration for the benefit of their respective countries.
They also thanked Mr Annan and his foundation for facilitating the meeting and expressed their willingness to continue to draw on his vast and rich experience in promoting cooperation between the two countries.