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Montevideo, April 12th 2024 - 12:00 UTC

 

 

Falklands, most Britons believe it should remain a BOT, and if the Islands join Argentina, “35% would be upset”

Monday, March 4th 2024 - 21:39 UTC
Full article 13 comments
Britons’ opinions on the Falklands largely mirror those towards Gibraltar: 47% put the decision to the Islanders on the three-way question. Britons’ opinions on the Falklands largely mirror those towards Gibraltar: 47% put the decision to the Islanders on the three-way question.

UK public opinion pollster YouGov asked Britons about their views towards Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, Gibraltar and the Falkland Islands based on the question of ”How would Britons feel if parts of the UK left?, including the two Overseas Territories, Falkland Islands and Gibraltar, which have regional disputes, Argentina and Spain.

Overall regarding the Falkland Islands, most Britons (52%) say the Falklands should stay as a British overseas territory, while only 16% think they should go to Argentina. And were the Falklands to join with Argentina, 35% would be upset, 9% would be pleased, and 46% wouldn’t care either way.

However the main reason for the survey was the recent 25th anniversary of the Good Friday agreement. YouGov asked mainland Britons whether or not they wanted to see Northern Ireland stay in the UK or Leave, and if the latter were to occur, how upset by that they would be.

But Northern Ireland is not the only constituent part of the United Kingdom whose future is in question. Scotland’s government is controlled by that nation’s separatist party, and Wales likewise has a sizeable independence movement. And further afield, the UK shares competing sovereignty claims over the British Overseas Territories of Gibraltar and the Falkland Islands.

To test how the British public feel about maintaining the country in its current shape, YouGov ran two surveys – one giving a two-way question (plus a don’t know choice) asking respondents whether they thought that area should stay a part of the UK or whether it should leave. The second gave respondents a three-way question, identical to the first but with the addition of a further option to say that the choice should be up to the people living there.

We also asked Britons how pleased or upset they would be were each area to gain its independence or join with another country. The survey was conducted in mainland Britain, i.e. respondents are in England, Wales and Scotland only.

Let's start with Northern Ireland, What do mainland Britons want to happen to Northern Ireland?

Northern Ireland is the area Britons are least interested in holding on to, compared to Scotland and Wales, which have strong independent parties. The predominant opinion on the three-way question is that it is for the people of Northern Ireland to decide whether to stay in the UK or join the rest of Ireland, at 44%. One in three (32%) want Northern Ireland to stay, while 18% think it should join the Republic.

Compared with the results of the three-way question, the results of the two-way question represent the highest shift towards ‘leave’ (as well as to ‘don’t know’), and the lowest shift towards ‘stay’. In this question, 40% of mainland Britons would want Northern Ireland to continue in the UK, compared to 34% saying it should go.

These three-way results are markedly different to those from April, when 53% preferred to leave the matter to the Northern Irish, 22% wanted them to remain in the UK and 13% said they should join the rest of Ireland.

It does appear from previous surveys that attitudes towards Northern Ireland can vary in a short space of time; it may be the case that the question is susceptible to ordering effects. Nevertheless, the results do consistently show a high level of apathy for what happens to Northern Ireland, with the main difference being to what extent the responses shift between sentiments of disinterest and desire to keep the nation within the UK.

How much would Britons care if Northern Ireland left the UK? Unlike Scotland and Wales, the primary reaction to Northern Ireland leaving the UK to join with the rest of Ireland is apathy: 43% of mainland Britons wouldn’t be bothered. Only a third (32%) would be upset, while 15% would be pleased.

Again, these figures are notably different to April’s poll, when 50% said they were apathetic, 22% upset and 11% pleased, likely for reasons already outlined.

What about the Overseas Territories of the Falkland Islands and Gibraltar. How much would Britons care if Gibraltar was no longer British?

As with Northern Ireland, Britons are not especially bothered about holding on to ‘The Rock’, with 48% indifferent. One in three (33%) would be upset were Gibraltar to return to Spain, while 9% would be happy.

And what do Britons want to happen to the Falkland Islands?

While you might expect there to be a greater emotional connection to the Falkland Islands – given the war fought to recover them – this is not the case. Besides, despite Falklands held a referendum in 2013 with a massive turnout and an almost unanimous decision to remain as an Overseas Territory, part of the British Family.

Britons’ opinions on the Falklands largely mirror those towards Gibraltar: 47% put the decision to the Islanders on the three-way question. One in three (34%) say it should remain British, while 9% would rather it went to Argentina.

On the two-way question, most Britons (52%) say the Falklands should stay as a British overseas territory, while only 16% think they should go to Argentina.

How much would Britons care if the Falkland Islands were no longer British?
Again, these results are essentially identical to those for Gibraltar: were the Falklands to join with Argentina, 35% would be upset, 9% would be pleased, and 46% wouldn’t care either way.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • Bud Spencer

    Your posts get more and more desperate 1833, the population stands over 3,600 which is double that of 1982, it will continue to rise steadily, people from 66 nations now make it their home. they call themselves Falkland Islanders, as JC has said in another thread you need to get a life, this fanatical nonsense you post makes you look very sad indeed,

    Mar 06th, 2024 - 01:21 pm +4
  • Pugol-H

    Malv
    There is no mention anywhere, in any UN resolution or document, of what ‘population characteristics’ are required for the right of self-determination to apply.

    Also the article makes no mention of what the ‘population characteristics’ need to be for the right of self-determination to apply, nor where the UN has specified this.

    Indeed by any definition, if one existed, that could be applied to the Islanders would also automatically include Argentina because of its history.

    This argument is a complete fabrication on the part of Argentina with no basis in any UN resolutions/documents, or international law, opiate for the MalviNazi masses with no truth involved.

    It completely ignores the uncomfortable truth for Argentina that they are the implanted population and not the Islanders.

    Mar 06th, 2024 - 02:48 pm +4
  • Monkeymagic

    Malvi

    You have no clue of history

    If we wanted land we could have kept Canada and Australia both far bigger than Argentina...we don't. We want the people who live there to choose their future. Please tell me what wars we fought with either of these two?? Many of the countries of the Commonwealth including many island groups didn't want independence and Britain encouraged and helped them to take it.

    Your claim of Britain evicting Argentine population is a BLATANT lie, it has been disproven so many times and it makes you look like an imbecile when you repeat it. Malvi, you've seen the logs of Pinedo, nobody was evicted. Not even the militia who'd been there just 10 weeks, they wanted to leave, it was Pinedo who was trying to force them to stay....Not one person was forced to leave against their will. You know it.

    Hong Kong was ceded on exactly the 99 year lease expiration....

    So the Falklands were NOT stolen from Argentina.

    Whatever Argentines had lived on the islands had left voluntarily years earlier, and Britain never recognised Argentine sovereignty.

    So, if Argentina usurped British islands and evicted its inhabitants, what would I think.

    Well Spain tried it in the Falklands in 1767, Argentina tried it in 1832 and again in 1982.

    All three times Britain defended its rights.

    However, many many islands have claimed their independence from Britain, we have recognised the rights of islanders to do just that, dozens of times.

    Perhaps its time Argentina did the same.

    It seems you have believed a false history, and cannot accept self determination. That is fascism Malvi.

    Mar 08th, 2024 - 10:56 pm +3
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