South Atlantic nations call for Falklands talks

16th January 2013, Comments 0 comments

More than 20 countries of the South Atlantic region on Wednesday called for talks to settle the Falkland Islands dispute between Britain and Argentina.

The appeal came at a meeting of the South Atlantic Peace and Cooperation Zone, which was created by the United Nations in 1986.

A statement issued after a ministerial-level conference called for a rapid and unconditional end to all forms of "colonialism," and for talks between London and Buenos Aires on the British-controlled Falklands, which Argentina refers to as the Malvinas.

Argentina invaded them in 1982, prompting Britain to send a naval task force to reclaim the islands at the cost of the lives of 255 British and 649 Argentine soldiers.

In March, the islands' 3,000 residents will vote on their future. Britain expects an overwhelming vote for the islands to remain British.

British defense officials have prepared plans for dealing with aggressive action by Argentina towards the islands in the event of a "yes" vote, the Sunday Telegraph reported last weekend.

Military chiefs have drawn up proposals for the deployment of extra troops, another warship and additional jets ahead of the March vote, the paper said.

© 2013 AFP

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