The Nicaraguan government Wednesday confirmed the arrival of an oil rig to be used for oil exploration in disputed Caribbean waters.
The Ocean Saratoga drilling platform, belonging to U.S. firm Noble Energy Ltd., arrived in Nicaragua Monday, and is situated at the Paraiso Sur (PS1) well, 168 km from Bluefields, capital of the Autonomous Region of the Southern Atlantic (RAAS), presidential spokeswoman Rosario Murillo said on Wednesday.
The rig is expected to drill for 90 days in an attempt to determine whether the site has potential for hydrocarbon exploitation, and if so, a second well will be drilled to determine the commercial capacity of the find, she said, adding the Nicaraguan Ministry of Energy and Mining will be permanently monitoring the work in this part of the Caribbean.
The governments of Costa Rica and Colombia both claim Nicaragua grants oil-exploration concessions in waters that belong to them, an allegation that Nicaragua denies.
International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled in November in favor of Nicaragua in its dispute with Colombia over boundaries in the Caribbean.
Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega has called on Colombia for dialogue on the implementation of the ICJ verdict, which grants Nicaragua control over more than 90,000 square km in the Caribbean that had been under Colombia's control.
He also called on neighboring Costa Rica for dialogue over a border dispute, but warned that his government might appeal to the ICJ to recover part of its territory annexed by Costa Rica 189 years ago, when Nicaragua was under military occupation.