FALKLANDS DEAL When was the Falklands War, what was it fought over and how did it start? All you need to know
THE Falklands war saw British troops sent to defend our South Atlantic territory from invading Argentine junta forces – 35 years ago this June.
The two countries entered a bloody conflict in 1982 and have had strained relations ever since. Here’s all you need to know about the conflict.
What was the Falklands War fought over?
Argentina says it has a right to the islands because it inherited them from the Spanish crown in the early 1800s.
It has also based its claim on the islands’ proximity to the South American mainland.
Britain says it has the right to the land based on its long-term administration of the Falklands and on the principle of self-determination for the islanders, who are almost all of British descent.
In a referendum on the islands in 2013 just three residents out of 1,517 were against remaining British.
Some 255 British service personnel died in the successful defence of the islands following an attack and occupation by Argentina, which calls the Falklands “Las Malvinas”.
The 1982 conflict left 649 Argentine soldiers dead.
The conflict was sparked after Argentina seized the islands and Britain sent a task force to retake them.
Tensions between Britain and Argentina over the Falklands flared up under former Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner but have calmed under her successor Mauricio Macri.
Britain has been keen to improve relations with Argentina since pro-business President Macri took over, although Argentina continues to claim sovereignty over the islands.
When did the Falklands War take place?
The two countries went to war over the islands in 1982.
The conflict lasted just over two months from April to June.
The fighting ended on June 14 – 35 years ago.
It was a brief but bitter war after Argentine forces landed on the Falklands to stake a territorial claim.
How did the Falklands War start?
On 2 April 1982, Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands, a remote UK colony in the South Atlantic.
The move led to war with the British.
The UK, which had ruled the islands for 150 years, quickly chose to fight.
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher said the 1,800 Falklanders were “of British tradition and stock”.
A task force was sent to reclaim the islands, 8,000 miles away.
What is the deal to identify fallen Argentine soldiers?
A deal to identify more than 100 Argentine soldiers buried on the Falkland Islands was struck by Britain and Argentina in June 2017.
The Argentine memorial cemetery in Darwin has 123 graves marked as “soldier only known to God”.
Negotiations backed by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have been under way to secure an agreement on taking DNA samples from the remains.
After talks in London, Americas minister Sir Alan Duncan said he had signed a deal with Argentina’s deputy minister Pedro Villagra Delgado. The work is expected to begin by summer 2018.
Sir Alan tweeted: “Pleased to sign @ICRC mandate with Argentine Dep. Min Villagra to identify Argentine soldiers buried in Darwin Cemetery, Falkland Islands.”
The two countries also agreed to try to increase the number of flights to the remote islands.
Only one monthly flight reaches the Falkland Islands currently.