Speaking ahead of the 40th anniversary of the 1982 South Atlantic War, President Alberto Fernández declared Friday that he is "clear" that the Malvinas Islands "are not English" and called for Britain to reopen negotiations over the disputed archipelago’s sovereignty.
"If there is one thing I am clear about, the only thing I am clear about, is that the Malvinas are not British, I am clear about that," declared the president.
The remarks, delivered in a rare interview with the BBC, came as the president recalled the moment on April 2, 1982, that he learnt that Argentina had invaded the islands.
"It was a very shocking moment for all of us, because obviously it was a measure adopted by the [1976-1983] military dictatorship in the utmost secrecy and nobody knew how it had happened, who had taken that decision.”
Fernández stressed that the invasion, launched by Leopoldo Fortunato Galtieri, "did not have popular consensus and the people were not consulted," though he stressed the islands have “always been Argentine.”
Ruling out the chance of another military invasion, Fernández said that he did not believe in war and is “a natural pacifist.”
“Problems are solved through dialogue and finding points of agreement," he said, before criticising the United Kingdom's refusal to sit down and discuss the sovereignty of the Malvinas Islands.