Falklands: despite MPs criticisms, “UK government wants full bilateral relationship with Argentina”
A British Conservative Member of Parliament Henry Smith labeled Argentine president Cristina Fernandez as ‘disgraceful’ for how she has treated the people of the Falkland Islands and also claimed she stopped an Argentine prosecutor from testifying before the US congress on the Buenos Aires 1994 bombing of an Israelite mutual association in order to protect a growing alliance with Iran.
MP Smith addressing the House of Commons also blasted Cristina Fernandez on her international and economic policies. However the UK government said it has always been clear “that it would like a full, bilateral relationship with Argentina”
Argentina has expropriated the property of European companies, provides a safe haven for drug dealers bringing methamphetamine to Europe, is developing a strategic relationship with Iran, it deliberately falsifies its economic statistics, it refuses to abide by international court judgments and refuses to pay its debts to other nations and institutions and even refuses to honor the most basic laws of contracts.
MP Smith said Argentina’s failure to pay back international loans could set a bad example for current financially-stricken Euro-zone nations and called of the UK government “to take a tough position on Argentina's G20 membership, just as it did with the Falkland Islands”.
It is simply unacceptable that a country that is a member of the G20, one of the most important and prestigious international bodies, should behave in this manner. I believe that Argentina's membership of the G20 should be revoked”.
Cristina Fernandez has made “Argentina is an international outlier - no other country, including in Europe, is behaving so irresponsibly in relation to its debts, no other country is in receipt of an IMF censure for falsifying inflation figures.
We should stand up for the rule of law, sanctity of contract, and respect for international legal and financial obligations. We should not stand with those who refuse to abide by court judgments and who steal private property”.
However Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt said MP Smith had raised a number of serious issues. But he said the UK intended to develop its bilateral relations with Argentina through the G20.
He said: This Government has always been clear that it would like a full, bilateral relationship with Argentina. As a country full of natural resources, Argentina has the potential to be a key trading partner with the United Kingdom in the future. But the Falkland Islands are British and will remain British, as clearly demonstrated by the referendum held in March”.
We remain disappointed that, over 30 years after its unjustified and illegal act of aggression against the Falklands, the government of Argentina continues its policy of hostility towards the Falklands people with attempts to strangle the economic livelihood of the islands and in its refusal to co-operate with the Falklands on a range of issues for the common good of the region” said FCO minister Burt.