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article imageFalkland Islands dispute gets heated

By Amanda Payne     Jan 13, 2012 in World
British Foreign Minister, William Hague, made a statement in the House of Commons that Uruguay, Chile and Brazil would allow ships flying the British flag to dock in their ports whilst travelling to and from the Falkland Islands.
However, that seems not the case. The Foreign Minister seems to have jumped the gun before actually getting the agreement signed and sealed before making his statement on Jan 10. According to a report in El Pais newspaper, the governments of Chile and Uruguay have not in fact changed their minds about allowing British flagged ships to use their ports. President José Mujica of Uruguay said in a statement published in a Buenos Aires newspaper that
"Uruguay considers the Malvinas an English possession in Latin America and, in consequence, does not recognize its flag. This anti-colonial view is not the sole position of Uruguay but a common position of all of Latin America,"
The Foreign Minister of Chile released a similar statement on Jan 11. So far, the Brazilian government is yet to comment but it is thought it will follow its fellow Latin American countries.
Meanwhile, Argentina, against whom Britain fought a war in 1982 over the sovereignty of the archipelago that one side calls the Falkland Islands and the other calls Las Malvinas, has started what the Daily Mail is dubbing a 'Squid War'. Argentina has told its fisherman to catch squid before they enter British waters around the islands, dealing a blow to the Falklands 45 million pound fishing industry.
Britain has high hopes of exploiting the large quantities of oil in waters off the Falklands and indeed the Evening Standard reports on Jan 13 that shares in Falkland Oil and Gas rose after the company raised 48 million pounds to continue exploring for oil. Argentina is equally determined that the oil belongs to them and should not be exploited by Britain.
With Prince William due to spend some time on the islands as part of a search and rescue team later in the year, things can only get more complicated with the war of words between Argentina along with its South American partners and Britain getting more heated.
More about Falkland Islands, Las Malvinas, squid war, Argentina
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