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UNITED STATES/AMERICAS-Government Replies To British PM's Falkland Statement in Tough Terms
 
Released on 2012-08-16 00:00 GMT
 


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2985193
 


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2011-06-17 12:30:53
 


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 Government Replies To British PM's Falkland Statement in Tough Terms
 Report by Guido Braslavsky: "For London There is Full Stop on Malvinas:
 Tough Argentine Reply" - Clarin.com
 Thursday June 16, 2011 20:20:34 GMT
 In a statement released last night the Foreign Ministry said that it
 "deplores" the fact that the British government "claims for itself the
 authority to put an end to the history of the sovereignty dispute over the
 islands." It also accused London of showing its "ongoing contempt" and
 displaying "a lack of respect for international law" in relation to the UN
 mandate and the international community's appeals for the two nations to
 resume negotiations.
 
Foreign Minister Hector Timerman used Twitter to ratchet up the dispute
 with Cameron, rejecting the expression "end of story" that US political
 scientist Francis Fukuyama had introduced in globalized discussions in the
 1990s. "On the Malvinas, I say to the prime minister that the end of the
 story is never a decision by one person, no matter how powerful that
 person may feel himself to be," tweeted the foreign minister.
 
This new diplomatic exchange came a day after Tuesday's 29th anniversary
 of the end of the war, with the fall of Puerto Argentino (Port Stanley);
 the kelpers celebrate this date as "Liberation Day." After that Cameron
 addressed the British Parliament, where he again reiterated the United
 Kingdom's official stance on the Falklands issue: it refuses to negotiate
 sovereignty, unless the kelpers ask it to do so.
 
"As long as the Falklands maintain their interest in remaining a British
 sovereign territory, they should continue to be a British sovereign
 territory. Period. End of story," Cameron declared forcefully, considering
 the issue closed.
 
As he does every week, the Conservative Party prime minister went to the
 House of Commons to give his report. The Falklands issue arose during
 Question Time, when oral questions on issues that are not on the agenda
 may be asked. The issue came up when a Conservative Party member, Andrew
 Rosindell, asked Cameron to remind President Barack Obama at their next
 meeting that London will never accept any kind of negotiations over the
 South Atlantic archipelago. Rosindell's concern was prompted by the fact
 that last week the OAS had urged Argentina and the United Kingdom to meet
 to negotiate the Falklands issue "as soon as possible."
 
This week Cristina Kirchner had reiterated this claim on two occasions.
 She first did so on Monday during UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's visit
 to Buenos Aires, in whose presence she repeated her demand that the United
 Kingdom comply with the UN resolutions and criticized the "double
 standard" tha t the most powerful nations use in international relations.
 She returned to the issue on Tuesday when she was inaugurating the
 "Roberto Mario Fiorito" presidential heliport. Its name is a tribute to
 the only helicopter pilot who died in the 1982 war. At that ceremony the
 president also delivered his DNI (National Identity Document) to James
 Peck, who was born in Port Stanley in 1968 -- he is a fourth generation
 kelper and the son of a British veteran -- and who later chose to become
 an Argentine citizen.
 
In May 2010 Cristina spoke with Cameron at the Latin America-European
 Union Summit in Madrid. In her speech there the president had again urged
 the United Kingdom to negotiate; London responded with its usual refusal,
 saying that it considers the islands an "overseas territory" that belongs
 to the United Kingdom.
 
In the last few years bilateral relations have become more strained
 because of the British decision to authorize hydrocarbon e xplorations
 north of the i slands. Argentina responded to that with a decree issued in
 February 2010 that requires ships en route to the islands and that wish to
 cross the Argentine Sea or to anchor in Argentine ports to request
 authorization from the Argentine government. It also promulgated Law
 26.659, which penalizes firms conducting explorations on the Argentine
 continental shelf that do not obtain permission from the Argentine
 government.
 
(In another report in Spanish on 16 June La Nacion adds: "The British
 prime minister has confirmed the islanders' right of self-determination.
 
"This was almost an automatic and blunt response to the claims that
 Argentina had just reiterated to the United Nations and to the support it
 recently obtained from the OAS. Yesterday British Prime Minister David
 Cameron told the British Parliament that sovereignty of the Falklands 'is
 not negotiable' and he confirmed the islanders' rights of
 self-determination.
 
"In so doing, the British government has buried the Casa Rosada's latest
 attempts to open sovereignty talks with London. Cameron, a member of the
 Conservative Party, appeared yesterday in the British Parliament and,
 among other matters, addressed the Falklands issue.
 
"In response to a suggestion from Conservative Party MP Andrew Rosindell
 that in his upcoming meeting with US President Barack Obama, Cameron
 should tell him that Great Britain will never agree to negotiate the
 islands' sovereignty with Argentina, the prime minister spoke
 emphatically: 'As long as the Falklands maintain their interest in
 remaining a British sovereign territory, they should continue to be a
 British sovereign territory. Period. End of story.'
 
"Rosindell's request came after last week the OAS, of which the United
 States is also a member, unanimously urged Argentina and Great Britain to
 meet 'as soon as possible' to negotiate in order to find a solution to the
 conflic t.
 
"Cameron's words were also uttered during the same week in which President
 Cristina Kirchner met in Buenos Aires with UN Secretary General Ban
 Ki-moon, and reiterated to him the Argentine appeal for London to
 negotiate the islands' sovereignty with Buenos Aires and comply with the
 UN resolution that urges nations to meet to negotiate when situations of
 conflict arise.
 
"Two days ago, when she inaugurated the Roberto Mario Fioriti presidential
 heliport, named in honor of the only helicopter pilot who died in the
 Falklands War -- he died as he going to the aid of a fishing boat -- the
 president declared: 'Claiming to have geographic dominion at a distance of
 over 14,000 kilometers is almost ridiculous.'
 
'Arrogance'
 
"Yesterday, seven hours after Cameron spoke, the government denounced the
 remarks by the British prime minister. A Foreign Ministry communique
 stated: 'Argentina deplores the fact that the Government of the United
 Kingdo m, in a lamentable act of arrogance, claims the authority to put an
 end to the story, referring to a sovereignty dispute whose existence has
 been recognized by the United Nations and that is still awaiting a
 resolution.'
 
"The government commented that Great Britain is displaying its ongoing
 contempt for the reiterated mandate of the United Nations and for the
 multiple appeals from the international community urging Argentina and the
 United Kingdom to resume negotiations in order to arrive at a solution to
 the sovereignty dispute concerning the Malvinas.'
 
"Meanwhile, from New York, the Argentine ambassador to the United Nations,
 Jorge Arguello, commented that 'the international community should
 carefully evaluate to what point it is appropriate for it to continue
 acknowledging permanent member status of the UN Security Council for
 countries that systematically ignore or violate the decisions of the
 General Assembly.'
 
"Arguello also declared that 'the statements from Mr Cameron confirm that
 the United Kingdom will uphold its interests by fair means or foul. They
 are not willing to proceed in accordance with law, but seem determined to
 defend their de facto position that originated through the use of force in
 the 19th century.'
 
"Cameron's words came a day after the government gave a DNI to James Peck,
 a native of the Falklands, and the son of a British veteran (who fought in
 the 1982 war). Peck has chosen to become an Argentine citizen.")
 
(Description of Source: Buenos Aires Clarin.com in Spanish -- Online
 version of highest-circulation, tabloid-format daily owned by the Clarin
 media group; generally critical of government; URL: http://www.clarin.com)
 
Material in the World News Connection is generally copyrighted by the
 source cited. Permission for use must be obtained from the copyright
 holder. Inquiries regarding use may be directed to NTIS, US Dept. of
 Commerce.

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