The Falkland Islands
The Falkland Islands are an archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean located 300 km away from the coast of South America. The territory has been the center of dispute between the United Kingdom and Argentina. The British claim to de jure sovereignty dates from 1690, and the United Kingdom has exercised de facto sovereignty over the archipelago almost constantly since 1833. Argentina has long disputed this claim, having been in control of the islands for a brief period prior to 1833. The dispute escalated in 1982, when Argentina invaded the islands, precipitating the Falklands War.
Contemporary Falkland Islanders consider themselves to be British. They gained full British citizenship with the British Nationality (Falkland Islands) Act 1983, after the Falklands War. Argentina argues that the islanders do not have the right to self-determination, arguing that they are not aboriginal and were brought to replace the Argentine population that Argentina claims was expelled after the re-establishment of British rule in 1833. The United Nations have called on both countries to begin dialogue over the sovereignty claim.
It was the largest armed conflict over the sovereignity of the lands, Argentina was in the midst of a devastating economic crisis and large-scale civil unrest against the repressive military junta that was governing the country. On 2 April, with Admiral Jorge Anaya, the Argentine Navy commander-in-chief at the time, as the main architect and supporter of the operation, a combined Argentine amphibious force invaded the Islands. Immediately, the UK severed diplomatic ties with Argentina, began to assemble a task force to retake the Islands and a diplomatic offensive began to gain support for economic and military sanctions. The UNSC issued Resolution 502 calling on Argentina to withdraw forces from the Islands and to both parties to seek a diplomatic solution. This solution was rejected by the argentines; The British Task Force began offensive action against Argentina on 23 April 1982 and recaptured South Georgia following a short naval engagement. The operation to recover the Falkland Islands began 1 May and after fierce naval and air engagements an amphibious landing was made at San Carlos Bay on 21 May. On 14 June the Argentine forces surrendered and control of the islands returned to the UK.
Argentine claims: sovereignty of the islands was transferred to Argentina from Spain upon independence and the British return in 1833 was illegal under the international law. It further says self-determination principles are not applicable since the current inhabitants are not aboriginal and was brought to replace the Argentine population expelled by the British invasion of 1833.
UK claims: The British were the first to claim the islands in 1690 and have never renounced that claim and the island has been constantly under the control of UK since 1833 except for 2 months when it was invaded by Argentina. It further says, Argentina’s attempts to colonize the islands in 1820-33 were “sporadic and ineffectual”. Lastly , UN General Assembly resolutions calling for negotiations “are flawed because they make no reference to the Islanders’ right to choose their own future.”