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William flies into Falkland service


Falkland Islands

William flies into Falkland service

Britain’s Prince William has begun a deployment to the Falklands with the Royal Air Force, angering Argentina which lays claim to the islands.

He is there on a six-week tour as a search-and-rescue helicopter pilot.

Britain has also sent one of its newest and most powerful warships to the region.

William’s presence is contributing to growing tensions between Buenos Aires and London as the 30th anniversary of Argentina’s invasion approaches.

Nigel Inkster from the International Institute of Strategic Studies in London said: ‘Clearly the Argentine government and a lot of Argentine people do see that as a provocation. It really has upset them, and obviously there’s nothing that they are going to be able to do about it.’

Argentina has persuaded several South American countries to turn away vessels flying the Falklands flag.

In the Venezuelan capital Caracas, a regional summit of left-wing South American leaders hosted by Hugo Chavez heard calls for stronger action against the UK over the Falklands.

Ecuador’s President Rafael Correa said: ‘I think we need to move to more concrete, forceful decisions: Latin American sanctions against Great Britain for example, and pulling out of the InterAmerican Treaty for Reciprocal Assistance.’

The ten week Falklands war of 30 years ago cost the lives of 650 Argentine troops and more than 250 British personnel.

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