Argentina criticizes Britain over Falklands actions

3rd January 2011, Comments 0 comments

British military exercises and oil prospecting around the Falkland Islands present an "insurmountable obstacle" to continuing agreements between London and Buenos Aires over the archipelago, Argentina said Monday.

Argentina claims the South Atlantic islands, known in Argentina as the Malvinas, which Britain has held since 1833.

Argentina's military junta invaded the Falklands in 1982, setting off a short but bloody war that resulted in a British victory.

Anglo-Argentine relations were not restored until 1990, and when ambassadors were exchanged they left aside the issue of Falklands sovereignty, agreeing only to handle "practical" issues.

But British military maneuvers an oil exploration by British companies have created "an insurmountable obstacle to the continuation and development of bilateral cooperation" through the "provisional bilateral understanding" reached after the war, Argentina's foreign ministry said Monday.

The statement was issued on the 178th anniversary of the British occupation of the archipelago.

The islands, which have a population of some 3,000 people, lie 450 kilometers (280 miles) off the South American coast.

© 2011 AFP

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