Falklands FURY: Argentina rages at UK over military exercises – 'Threat to the continent'
Officials in the South American nation are growing increasingly frustrated by military exercises in the area, calling for them to cease. Andrés Dachary, Argentina’s secretary for the Falklands, echoed Gustavo Melella, governor of the Tierra del Fuego province which lays claim to the region, by voicing condemnation.
They highlighted exercises carried out by HMS Forth, army units and RAF aircraft over the last few weeks.
It follows last month’s warning from President Alberto Fernandez who said reclaiming the territory from Britain, referred to as Malvinas in Spanish, is "a matter of state".
Mr Dachary told FM Masters Radio the coronavirus pandemic has not deterred these plans.
He said: “The British military exercises in Malvinas are a threat to the continent.
“In a complex pandemic situation, we have not neglected our claim over Malvinas.
“In addition to the British hostile attitude invading part of our province, they also carried out military exercises in recent days."
The exercises are said to have taken place on San José Island, belonging to the Malvinas archipelago.
Governor Melella contacted the UK embassy in protest, asking for the immediate end of these practices.
He said: "Not only does it harm our sovereignty, but they also represent a tangible threat to the security of people in Tierra del Fuego, Argentina and all of Latin America.
"Every time it occurs, we must intervene and make it visible. It is a serious situation since we are a province invaded by another country that carries out military tests on our lands."
President Fernandez has insisted Argentina will not agree to British demands to give up sovereignty claims for the Falklands.
He added: “The United Kingdom is usurping Argentine lands and we are not going to give in on that.”
It comes ahead of Buenos Aires holding talks with Britain next month in their bid to claim sovereignty while placing sanctions on illegal fishing in the South Atlantic.
Diplomat Javier Figueroa hopes to build a positive agenda with Downing Street during the talks.
Mr Figueroa recently published an article in a Panama magazine which said: “Since the military defeat of 1982, our diplomatic actions were aimed at reopening such talks”.
The UK claimed the Falklands 187 years ago and won a war over the territory in 1982. It left around 649 invading Argentine soldiers and 255 British dead.
Conflict ceased after 74 days.
In April, the former head of the Royal Navy told Argentina to “wind their necks in” after they alleged HMS Forth had breached a peace pact in the region.
Former Admiral Lord Alan West said: “[They] ought to just wind their necks in, keep quiet and let things move forward in a nice, peaceful way.”