In a Monday release, the Falkland Islands government condemned Argentina's refusal of over flight permission for the air link with Brazil and accused Buenos Aires of denying the Islands self-determination, ”enforcing sanctions on our people and another attempt to isolate us from South America and impede our economic development.”
The commercial air link between Punta Arenas, southern Chile, and the Falkland Islands resumed last Saturday after an absence of more than two years because of the Covid 19 pandemic.
“A historic event” is how Guillermo Carmona, the Argentine Secretary for Malvinas, South Atlantic islands, and Antarctica affairs described the confirmed resumption of the weekly air link between Punta Arenas in Chile and the Falkland Islands, with a monthly stop over at Rio Gallegos in Santa Cruz province.
Following the announcement made on 7 April 2022, the air link between the Falkland Islands and Chile will resume on Saturday 2 July 2022. LATAM flight schedules will be reinstated with flights stopping in Punta Arenas and Santiago, and once a month stopping in Rio Gallegos.
Following the announcement last month, concerning the relaxation of COVID-19 measures in the Falkland Islands, the government is now seeking to resume the airlink with Chile from 2 July 2022, provided that all necessary permissions are granted and mainland airports are open.
The Falkland Islands Government continues to closely monitor the situation regarding the suspension of commercial air links with Chile and Brazil, in light of the ongoing pandemic.
On July 13 ExCo approved measures to facilitate a repatriation flight for approximately 50 individuals present in the Falklands who had planned to return home via scheduled flights, but due to the suspension of the LATAM services to South America had been unable to do so.
A new capability to fly directly from the United Kingdom to the Falkland Islands has been achieved. The modified aircraft, G-VYGM, took its maiden flight on Tuesday 2 June 2020, as part of the scheduled South Atlantic Airbridge and returned directly to the UK on Friday, setting two new world records in the process.
While the Atlantic Airbridge between the Falkland Islands and Brize Norton continues to service normally and is crucial for sending swab tests to labs in the UK, the two commercial flights to the Islands, one from Chile and the most recent from Brazil remain suspended.
The Argentine media has revealed some additional details about the coming weekly airlink between the Falkland Islands and the South American continent, scheduled to begin “sometime in the second half of November”.