The elected government of the Falkland Islands said on Friday it regrets the latest attempt by the Argentine government to economically undermine the Islanders way of life, which is yet another example of intimidation and bullying towards a country of 3.000 people.
The brief release is in reply to the Argentine government measures announced Thursday which will target the prosecution of all those companies associated with the development of the Falklands’ oil industry, alleging they are ‘illegal’ activities in the South Atlantic disputed waters.
“We will take the required legal, administrative, civil and criminal actions against oil companies currently involved in Malvinas drilling”, said Foreign Minister Hector Timerman in a much publicized press conference in Buenos Aires.
The Falklands government release signed by Roger Edwards, member of the Legislative Assembly, further indicates that efforts to disrupt trade and sea and air links to the Falkland Islands are illegal and are “entirely counter-productive in developing any relationship between the Falklands and Argentina”.
The Foreign Office which is responsible for the British Overseas Territory foreign affairs and defense in an immediate reply to the Argentine Thursday announcement said that hydrocarbons exploration is “a legitimate commercial venture and the British government supports the rights of the Falkland Islanders to develop their hydrocarbons sector”.
The FCO spokesperson added the Argentine threats are “illegal, unbecoming and wholly counter-productive”.
Follows the full FI government statement:
The Falkland Islands Government regrets this latest attempt by the Argentine Government to economically undermine our home and our way of life. In accordance with our right to self-determination, we are absolutely clear that we have the right to develop our own natural resources and are therefore entitled to license such activities as we see fit, without reference to Argentina.
We are entirely clear that Argentine domestic legislation does not apply to the Falkland Islands, and that therefore there is absolutely no legal basis for the Argentine Government’s proposed actions.
This latest announcement is yet another example of the Argentine Government’s policy of intimidation and bullying towards our country of 3000 people. Efforts to disrupt trade and sea and air links to the Falkland Islands are illegal, and are entirely counter-productive in developing any relationship between the Falklands and Argentina.
The Falkland Islands Government will work with any companies operating in our waters to minimize any practical implications for their operations that may arise from the Argentine Government’s proposed actions.
Member of the Legislative Assembly