”Visas are a matter for the Falkland Islands Government to determine,” confirmed Member of Legislative Assembly Mike Summers this week.Reacting to a story in last Friday’s Penguin News the Argentine Foreign Minister Susana Malcorra claimed in the Argentine press it was not for the Islanders but the UK government to make decisions over visas.
Argentine foreign minister downplayed the news that the Falkland Islands could impose a visa system for Argentines visiting the Islands, although admitting the ministry is following the issue closely and insisted that confidence building with the local population takes time.
Falkland Islands lawmaker, MLA Mike Summers apologized on behalf of the UK Ministry of Defense (MoD) for the disruption that the flight diversion from Ascension Island had caused, but said he knew they were working hard to ensure proper arrangements were in place for the continuation of the air bridge with the UK.
The Falkland Islands are planning a community event for April 29 to celebrate same sex marriage becoming legal in the Falklands. The Marriage Bill debated at Legislative Assembly was passed. by a 7 to one vote, reports the Penguin News.
The Falkland Islands Government has announced the appointment of Mandy Whittingham as the new Director of Health & Social Services. Mandy is a registered nurse and has several qualifications in Religious Studies & Education, Health Education & Health Promotion.
The Falkland Islands Government is under no pressure from the UK government to agree to something that we feel is not in our best interests, and ”the final decision on (additional) flights will be ours, and ours alone”. The statement belongs to the elected Legislative Assembly of the Falkland Islands' chair of the month, Barry Elsby.
Only Brazilian or Chilean airlines need apply for a second flight to the Falkland Islands from South America it was indicated in a press briefing given in Stanley at the end of December, after MLAs returned from talks in London.
Argentina, United Kingdom and Falkland Islands representatives have agreed on a process for an additional air service to the Falklands, from either Brazil or Chile, with a target launch date of October 2017, and likewise will address scientific data exchange in relation to fish stocks in the South Atlantic, particularly regarding the migratory Illex stock.
Argentina and the United Kingdom held in London on Monday the first of a two-day round of talks in the framework of the September joint communiqué with the purpose of improving bilateral relations and cooperation, and advancing in one of the few contentious issues, the Falkland Islands' dispute.
Two Falklands lawmakers, MLA Mike Summers and MLA Phyl Rendell, will represent the Islands government as part of the British delegation at meetings with Argentina in London next Monday and Tuesday. According to a release from the Islands' government the principal item to be addressed is a second flight from South America to the Falklands that was agreed in a September Joint Statement between the UK and Argentina.