Group of 77, China back Argentina on Falkland talks

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Foreign Ministers of the Group of 77 developing countries and China have urged Britain to renew talks on the disputed Falkland islands, Argentina's foreign ministry said Sunday.

The Argentine Foreign Ministry statement said the joint G-77 and China statement acknowledged that the current situation "seriously harms Argentina's economic capacity."

Both Argentina and Britain claim the windswept Falkland Islands, known here as the Malvinas and considered an occupied part of Argentina. Since the 1830s have been controlled by London.

The South Atlantic territory has been at the heart of renewed diplomatic bickering since the start of oil and gas exploration there last year.

Argentina and Britain fought a brief war in 1982 for control of the Falklands in which Britain maintained control.

On Wednesday, President Cristina Kirchner warned Britain at the UN General Assembly that Argentina could suspend bilateral working agreements if London fails to sit down for talks over the sovereignty of the Falklands.

Prime Minister David Cameron insisted in June that the islands would remain British territory as long as they wanted "full stop, end of story" -- a declaration derided by Kirchner at the time as an "expression of mediocrity and almost of stupidity."

A UN decolonization committee has debated the status of the Falklands each year since a 1965 resolution that called on the countries to reach a mutually agreeable settlement. But it has little progress to show for its efforts and Kirchner said she was running out of patience.

© 2011 AFP

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