Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Energy News .

Argentina ups stakes in Falklands claim
by Staff Writers
Buenos Aires (UPI) Feb 7, 2013

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only

Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman raised the stakes in the diplomatic debate on his country's claim on the Falkland Islands during a London visit marked by outlandish statements, open rows with Britain and rhetorical own-goals.

It was a visit that reminded Britons that the Falklands would dominate more headlines in the coming months than a British Overseas Territory usually gets and that it would demand more investments of money and government time.

Argentina under military rule invaded the islands in 1982 but was beaten back by Britain in a 74-day conflict that caused more than 900 deaths. Buenos Aires revived its claim on the islands, which it calls Malvinas, after return to civilian rule.

As Argentine claims on the islands gained momentum last year Britain began building up naval defenses around the South Atlantic islands. But the column inches claimed by Timerman's visit to London pointed to a gathering danger that many in London had tended to dismiss.

British diplomatic analysts and officials say that Argentina's reasons for ratcheting up the Falklands sovereignty debate are internal. President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has moved public attention from domestic economic and political concerns and silenced Argentine critics who say the Falklands debate is helping her consolidate power and push domestic problems away from the immediate agenda.

Fernandez secured re-election with a landslide victory in October 2011, polling nearly 54 percent, but is accused by critics of undermining Argentine democracy, a charge the government denies.

The president was most often in headlines last year over her increasingly strident Falklands pronouncements, verbal attacks on labor unions and news media and international organizations hesitant about Argentina's re-entry into markets while creditors from its sovereign default in the 1990s remain unpaid.

Latin American diplomatic support for her Falklands fervor hasn't been lacking but neighbors, including Brazil and Chile, have indicated they don't want to undermine their own ties with Britain and the European Union for Argentina's sake.

Fernandez drew neighbors into frequent pronouncements that either backed Argentina's claim or denied Britain and the Falklanders the benefit of their neutrality.

There were signs at Latin American international forums that more regional governments agreed the Falklands were a colonial legacy and not an independent entity exercising self-determination, albeit under British umbrella.

As a result, British diplomacy and military defense establishments have had to divert more resources to the South Atlantic, an area far from Britain's more pressing priorities, having to deal with multiple crises in West Africa, Egypt, Syria, the Israeli-Palestinian stalemate, Iran and the EU rows over membership, sharing of powers between London and Brussels, finance and taxation.

Timerman's London visit got him headlines that Argentina hoped for and some that it didn't.

Timerman told the Guardian newspaper Argentina could be ruling the Falkland Islands within two decades but without the need to eject the Falklanders.

He predicted that pressure from other countries would force Britain to give way.

"I don't think it will take another 20 years," he said. "I think that the world is going through a process of understanding more and more that this is a colonial issue, an issue of colonialism and that the people living there were transferred to the islands."

British Prime Minister David Cameron argues the issue is self-determination. The Falkland islanders, who number fewer than 3,000, are to vote in March on their future and are expected to vote overwhelmingly to remain a British overseas territory.

Several countries including Britain, France, Spain and finally Argentina attempted to settle the Falklands after their discovery in 1600. In 1833, Britain seized the islands from Argentina.

In 1982, Argentina invaded the islands. Britain seized them back after a two-month undeclared war.

Timerman said if Argentina regains sovereignty the islanders will retain "their way of life, their language and right to remain British citizens."

But Timerman also caused a controversy by comparing Jewish settlers in occupied Palestinian territories and the Falklanders.

British lawmaker Alun Cairns said he was offended by the comments.

"Effectively, he (Timerman) dismissed the right of self-determination to the Falkland Islanders on the obscure reason that it's a territory rather than a country or a nation," Cairns said.

Dismissing the March referendum Timerman said "it is something that doesn't mean anything because if you ask the colonial people who came with a colonial power and replaced the people who were living in the Islands, it is asking the British citizens of the Malvinas Islands if they want to remain British."

Timerman likened it to asking only new Jewish settlers in the occupied territories if they want to remain Israeli.

Timerman was to have met with British Foreign Secretary William Hague but declined when Hague told him two Falkland Islands representatives would be present.


Related Links
Powering The World in the 21st Century at

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Oil majors scramble for Abu Dhabi deal
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UPI) Feb 7, 2013
The world's oil majors are scrambling to get a piece of the biggest oil deal ever offered by the United Arab Emirates, the world's fourth largest oil exporter. It looks like energy-hungry China is leading the pack, elbowing out the West's Big Oil leaders in a significant geopolitical shift in the Middle East's oil industry toward Asia. The deal, involving half of the Emirates' pr ... read more

Diageo Transitions to 100 Percent Renewable Electricity at its North American HQ

China plans stricter fuel standards after smog

Outside View: Energy realism

Obama's energy secretary stepping down

Argentina ups stakes in Falklands claim

Oil majors scramble for Abu Dhabi deal

Iran slams new 'hostile' US sanctions on oil exports

Technip to build pipe at Gannet platform

Mainstream Renewable Power Starts Building Wind Farm in Chile

Sabotage may have felled U.K. wind turbine

Hgcapital And Blue Energy Agree UK Wind Farm Investment Deal

Japan plans world's largest wind farm

Verengo Solar Featured on Torrance CitiCABLE's "Common Cents"

Trina Solar supplies 20MW to launch abakus solar partnership

India's solar program a trade issue

US challenges India at WTO over solar panel rules

World's First AP1000 Containment Vessel Top Head Ready

Westinghouse Commits To Czech Steel For AP1000 Plants At Temelin

Centrica makes U-turn on British nuclear plant plan

Fukushima operator TEPCO projects $1.29 bn year net loss

Scientists turn toxic by-product into biofuel booster

Reaping Profits from Landfill Biogas

Versalis and Yulex partner to produce guayule-based biorubbers

Agricultural Growth in Chinese Desert Offers Opportunities For Economic Value and Better Ecology

Reshuffle for Tiangong

China to launch 20 spacecrafts in 2013

Mr Xi in Space

China plans manned space launch in 2013: state media

U.S. multi-state group to lower emissions

Could the humble sea urchin hold the key to carbon capture?

Energy leaders say climate crisis more urgent

Understanding the historical probability of drought

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement