Argentina's government has sent a note of protest to the British authorities rejecting “in the strongest terms” military manoeuvres and proposed missile tests on the Malvinas (Falklands) Islands.
According to a statement released by the Foreign Ministry in Buenos Aires this Friday, the British Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed the Argentine Embassy in the UK about the carrying out of military exercises, including the upcoming launch of Rapier missiles in the coming days.
After receiving the news, “the Argentine government sent the UK government a stern note of protest,” according to Buenos Aires. Argentina also plans to report the issue to the United Nations and the International Maritime Organisation, as well as issuing a warning through the Argentine Hydrographic Service (a branch of the Ministry of Defence).
For Argentina, these manoeuvres “constitute an unjustified show of force and a deliberate departure from the appeals of numerous United Nations resolutions and other international organisations” that urge both countries to resume negotiations in order to find a peaceful solution to the sovereignty dispute.
“The alleged defensive position of the British military base in the South Atlantic is not only totally unjustified but also a threat to the entire region,” the Foreign Ministry warned.
Earlier this week the Argentine government also filed a complaint with Uruguay after a British military plane was permitted to re-fuel in Montevideo when returning from the Malvinas, a source from the Argentine Foreign Ministry told AFP.
On its way back to the United Kingdom, the plane made a technical stopover in Montevideo without notice, contradicting cooperation policies over the disputed islands between Argentina and Uruguay according to the source.
Uruguay has historically supported the "legitimate right of Argentina in the sovereignty conflict with Great Britain over the Malvinas Islands", as well as United Nations resolutions that urge the parties to negotiate, according to the source.
Argentina and the UK maintain a sovereignty dispute over the islands, over which they fought a war in 1982 that ended 74 days later with the surrender of Argentina, then ruled by a dictatorship. During the war, 648 Argentines and 255 British died.