Ambassador quizzed in Falklands row

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Published: Thursday 9th April 2015 by The News Editor

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The Argentine ambassador was summoned to the Foreign Office yesterday in a fresh diplomatic row about the Falkland Islands, officials have confirmed.

Argentina’s president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and ambassador Alicia Castro last week launched new criticism of the British Government’s plan to boost defences on the South Atlantic islands.

It has also been suggested oil firms could be prosecuted if they start work in the waters around the islands without formal permission from Argentina.

A Foreign Office spokesman said: ” The UK has no doubt about its sovereignty over the Falkland Islands and surrounding maritime areas, nor about the Falkland Islanders’ right to decide their own future.

“We object strongly to recent statements by the Argentine president and the Argentine ambassador to London and so summoned the ambassador to account for these.”

Britain last week dismissed the threat of prosecution against oil and gas firms.

The comments came after three British firms – Premier Oil, Rockhopper Exploration and Falkland Oil & Gas – announced that they had found oil and gas in a remote field north of the islands, which are claimed by Argentina.

Last month, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said two Chinook helicopters and an upgraded surface-to-air missile system will be part of a new defence package for the Falkland Islands.

Ms Fernandez de Kirchner’s latest comments came on April 2, the 33rd anniversary of the start of the 1982 Falklands War.

She reportedly said: “International law and dialogue, not militarisation, are the path to a reunion and sovereignty.

“We will see the islands form part of our territory again. It’s not just wishful thinking.”

Published: Thursday 9th April 2015 by The News Editor

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