In the latest Argentina travel news, Prince William, second in line to the British crown, arrived in February in the Falklands/Malvinas Islands for duty as a rescue pilot, according to the Argentina Independent.
Prince William’s deployment comes during high tensions between the British and Argentines in light of the 30 year anniversary of the Falklands/Malvinas war in 1982. The British maintain that Prince William’s arrival was purely humanitarian, and not meant to provoke the Argentines.
But Britain is making plans to celebrate the 30th anniversary of their victory by sending the HMS Dauntless, a Type 45 destroyer warship, to the Falklands, according to the Daily Mail and the BBC.
In response, the Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman described the move as a “menace to regional security.” The Argentines are taking the issue to the United Nations, hoping that the UN will support their efforts to force Britain into decolonizing the Falklands. The actor Sean Penn has advocated for the Argentina government, calling the UK to negotiate with Argentina via the United Nations, according to the Huffington Post.
In response to the demands for decolonization, the British claim that the Falklands Islands have the right to self-determination, and the residents prefer to remain under the British flag. The BBC reported that the British Prime Minister David Cameron accused Argentina’s government of being “colonialist” for wanting to reclaim the Falklands.
The population of the Falklands/Malvinas is approximately 2-3000, with most being of British descent, although in recent years, Chileans have immigrated to the islands. Sheep-shearing and raising are some of the main occupations of island inhabitants. Tourism during the Antarctica cruise season, from late November to early March, brings in a few more seasonal workers.
President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner has continuously fought the British presence in the Falklands, stating that their primary motive in the region is for gas and petroleum extraction. Another reason may be that the UK wants to have easy access to Antarctica, which brings income from Antartica cruises and tourism and may prove profitable for natural resources in the coming years.
The outcome of this Argentina travel news will be interesting to watch; tourism has been a major industry in the Falklands since the 1990s. Antarctica cruises often include the South Sandwich Islands, South Georgia, the Shetland Islands, and the Falkland Islands on their cruise itineraries. The Falklands are a paradise for birdwatchers and penguin lovers. Many of the albatross and penguins on the shore are not afraid to waddle up to the curious onlooker on an Antarctica cruise.