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Argentine architects hope for early Memorial siteing.

Thursday, May 31st 2001 - 21:00 UTC
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Two Argentine architects who are currently visiting the Falkland Islands with new plans for a permanent Memorial for Argentines killed in the 1982 War, are hopeful that the structure will be in place ?well within the next year and earlier if possible'.

It is 18 months since the previous plans for a 10 meter high Memorial in the Argentine War Cemetery at Darwin, were rejected by Falklands Councillors. Now however the Memorial is, apparently, no longer a commitment of the Argentine Government, and is under the jurisdiction of the Committee of Falklands and South Atlantic Islands next-of-Kin of Argentine Servicemen killed in the hostilities of 1982. ?This is a private entity which is independent of the Government and its aim is to move ahead as quickly as possible and have the Memorial erected in the Cemetery as a tribute to the soldiers who died', said Monica Berraz one of the two architects.

On Wednesday Ms Berraz and Carlos D'Aprile met the Falkland Governments Environmental & Planning officer Tom Eggeling in what was described as 'a pre-planning application consultation'. The new proposal is for a Memorial with two curved walls in the shape of open hands, with 4.5 meters high cross in the vertex, with the names of all Argentine servicemen listed. A special account has been opened with the Banco Nacion in Argentina and donations to the Memorial fund are being requested. In all around $US1.5 millions may be needed.

The next step will be for the Argentine architects to make an official application to the Planning & Building Committee (PBC) which is a Falkland Islands Government organization under the Chairmanship of noted hard-liner Councillor Norma Edwards. According to the architects they will not need to seek permission from Buenos Aires in order to present their application to the PBC to site the Memorial at the Darwin cemetery. ?We will be making the application on behalf of the Next-of-Kin Committee and not the Argentine Government and it is understood that all exchanges will be conducted under the sovereignty umbrella which was signed by the two Governments. We are on an exclusively humanitarian mission' said Ms Berraz.

Under the terms of normal procedure all applications to the Planning & Building Committee are required to be made public through the local newspaper Penguin News and on local radio, and Councillors have assured the public that this particular application will not be treated any differently. This means that any comment or opposition t

Categories: Falkland Islands.

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