Argentina Urges UK to Resume Negotiations Over Falkland Islands

    Argentina Urges UK to Resume Negotiations Over Falkland Islands
    Last updated Mar 03, 2023
    Image credit: BBC News


    • Argentina's foreign ministry on Thursday announced plans to resume negotiations with the UK concerning sovereignty over the disputed South Atlantic archipelago of the Falkland Islands — or Islas Malvinas — calling for the matter to be resolved before the UN.[1]
    • Foreign minister Santiago Cafiero informed his British counterpart James Cleverly of the intent in a meeting during a summit in India, prompting the latter to cite the Islanders' decision to remain a self-governing UK Overseas Territory, in reference to the majority support for British governance in the 2013 referendum.[2]
    • The move formally ends the 2016 Foradori-Duncan pact, which saw Buenos Aires and London agree to disagree over sovereignty of the islands while establishing regulation and cooperation in areas including energy, fishing, shipping, and transportation in the region.[1]
    • UK minister for the Americas, David Rutley, expressed his disappointment that Buenos Aires had decided to withdraw from the deal, arguing that it had benefitted all stakeholders while also comforting the families of those killed in the 1982 conflict.[3]
    • Contested sovereignty over the archipelago led to a short but savage war nearly 40 years ago. Three female residents, as well as 649 Argentines and 255 British soldiers, were killed after Argentina launched a military operation that was later driven out by a British naval armada.[4]
    • Disputes over sovereignty initially emerged in 1833, when London occupied the South Atlantic archipelago. A UN resolution requiring Argentina and the UK to enter into direct negotiations over the islands was passed in 1965.[5]


    Establishment-critical narrative

    It is unacceptable that London still holds a grudge against Buenos Aires decades after hostilities took place. Carrying on this imperial-era dispute that could have been solved without an economically and ethically costly war is unjust and nonsensical. The Falkland Islands remain fully independent of Britain and it is about time to strike a deal with Argentina and return sovereignty to its inhabitants.

    Pro-establishment narrative

    Islanders, who overwhelmingly voted to remain British decades after facing heinous aggression from Argentina, have the right to self-determination under the UN charter — it is the UK's duty to uphold it and defend them in the face of further threats. Aside from moral obligation, it is in the UK's interest to continue with its commitment to the archipelago as it is located in a strategically significant position near the Antarctic in the South Atlantic.

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