Argentina's President Demands Talks Over Sovereignty

In an escalating situation Argentina's President, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, has demanded that Britain enter negotiations over the sovereignty of the Falkland Islands.

Addressing the UN Committee on Decolonisation on the 30th anniversary of the UK territory's liberation from Argentine occupation, President Fernandez said history and geography backed Argentina's claim. But an islander told the committee Argentina was "bullying".

UK Prime Minister David Cameron has said there would be "no negotiation".

Earlier on Thursday, the Falklands marked the end of Argentina's 74-day 1982 occupation with a service at Port Stanley's Christ Church cathedral.

Veterans of the war then led a military parade to the Liberation Monument for an act of remembrance, paying tribute to the 255 UK servicemen and three Falklands civilians who died in the war.

An estimated 650 Argentines were also killed during the conflict.

President Fernandez said during her address that the Malvinas - as Argentina refers to the islands - formed part of the South American continental plate.

"How can it be claimed that, 14,000 kilometres away [8,700 miles], that it can be part of the British territory?" she asked.

"The UK is benefiting from its privileged position as a permanent member of the security council of the United Nations," she said.

"The issue of the Malvinas is a challenge to see whether or not we are capable of overcoming prejudice and cliches that are outdated, because the world has changed and there are new players."

President Fernandez said Argentina was "just asking to talk" about the islands' sovereignty and the fact they were still under British rule was "an affront to the world which we all dream of".

In a speech at the Falkland Islands Government reception on Thursday evening, David Cameron spoke of "aggression from over the water".

"My message to the government of Argentina is this: the UK has no aggressive intentions towards you.

"Accusations of militarisation and nuclear threats are hyperbole and propaganda.

"But do not under-estimate our resolve," he added.

"Threats will not work, attempts to intimidate the islanders will not succeed, because Britain stands ready and willing to stand up for the Falkland Islanders at any time.

"As long as they wish to remain a British territory, that is the way it will stay."


Related UK National News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

03 January 2013
Argentina Repeat Call For Return Of Falkland Islands
Argentina’s president has again called on the UK to return the Falkland Islands, a call strongly rebuffed by Downing St. Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner had urged UK Prime Minister David Cameron to abide by a 1965 UN resolution to "negotiate a solution" to the dispute.
01 February 2013
Argentina Reject Invite To Talks With Falklands
A Foreign Office invitation for Argentina to meet with members of the Falkland Islands government in London next week, has been turned down. "The international community does not recognise a third party in this dispute," the country’s foreign minister, Hector Timerman said, rejecting the offer.
21 June 2011
All Island Approach To Open Up Renewables Opportunities
Ministers from the UK, Republic of Ireland, The Channel Islands and the Isle of Man have signed up to a historic deal to cooperate on exploiting the major wind and marine resource in and around the islands. The states involved agreed to co-operate in the All Islands Approach to energy at this afternoon's British Irish Council in London.
18 February 2010
Falkland's Oil Operation Being 'Monitored'
The UK Foreign Office has said it is 'closely monitoring' hydrocarbons explorations off the Falkland Islands. Europe and Asia Minster Chris Bryant said the British Government remains focused on supporting the Falkland's authorities in developing legitimate business in its territory.
04 January 2013
The Sun Runs Ad In Argentinian Newspaper
The Sun has taken out an advertisement in an Argentinian newspaper reasserting British sovereignty over the Falklands. The ad comes just days after Argentina's president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, published an advert in the UK press accusing Britain of colonialism.
12 March 2013
Cameron Urges Argentine To Respect Referendum
Argentina have been urged to ‘respect the wishes of the people of the Falkland Islands’ after they voted overwhelmingly for the territory to stay British. The historical referendum aimed to send a defiant message to Argentina and the outside world.
13 January 2014
Total Acquires 40% Interest In Shale Gas Exploration Licences
Total has announced that it has acquired a 40% interest in two shale gas exploration licences in the United Kingdom. The interests are in Petroleum Exploration & Development Licences 139 and 140 in the Gainsborough Trough area of the East Midlands region of the UK, which cover an area of 240 km2.
21 January 2010
Anti-Terror Spending Cut Row
Planned UK intelligence spending cuts in Pakistan have been criticised by opposition politicians. Foreign Office minister Baroness Kinnock said the department faced a £110m funding shortfall as a result of the weakening pound. She said counter-terrorism operations in Pakistan and Afghanistan would be scaled back as a consequence.
22 June 2007
Malta sightings investigated in hunt for Madeleine
Police in Malta are investigating possible sightings of missing British girl Madeleine McCann. According to reports, a number of British tourists have reported seeing a child who resembled the missing four-year-old in the island's capital Valletta and the resort of Sliema.
23 January 2006
Elderly British tourists targeted in Rio robbery
Gunmen in Rio de Janeiro have robbed a group of elderly British tourists, the Foreign Office said. The tourists were travelling from the city's airport to their hotel, when three armed men held up their tour bus.
30 September 2004
Russia's backing of Kyoto Protocols welcomed by UN
The head of the UN environment agency has welcomed the Russian government’s endorsement of the Kyoto Protocol regulating emissions linked to climate change. Moscow’s ratification would bring the pact one step closer to enforcement and “breathe new life” into the international climate negotiations that resume in December in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
23 September 2008
Briton Killed In Argentina Shooting
A British man has been killed in Argentina after reportedly being shot by two men on a motorcycle. Harry Christopher, 29, was shot multiple times in the back in the Moron area of Buenos Aires province on Friday, according to local media reports.
27 June 2012
Jersey 'Breakaway' Threat Over Tax
While Scotland prepares for a historic referendum on its links to London, a senior Channel Islands politician has called for a smaller part of the UK to break away.
09 November 2011
Gov To Close Channel Isles VAT Dodge
The Government has announced that a VAT loophole used by mail order retailers operating in the Channel Islands will be closed from April next year. The Low Value Consignment Relief (LVCR), which was used by online merchants such as Play.com to undercut its competitors, will no longer apply to goods sent to the UK from the Channel Islands.
25 July 2003
UK summers will be 4°C hotter by 2100, claims report
Summer temperatures could rise by 4°C by the end of the century, summer rainfall could drop by nearly half and winters are likely to get much wetter, according to a new climate change report on the UK.