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Falklands Disputed Islands (Islas Malvinas) Sovereignty Dispute

The Falkland, South Georgia, and South Sandwich Islands Disputed Sovereignty

Sovereignty over the Falkland Islands(Islas Malvinas) continues to be disputed by both Argentina and the United Kingdom.

The British claim over the islands dates from 1690 when English Captain John Strong named the Falkland Sound, and the United Kingdom has pushed de facto sovereignty over the archipelago almost continuously since 1833. Argentina has long disputed this claim, and had many colonization attempts on the islands for a period prior to 1833. The dispute came to a head in 1982, when Argentina’s military dictatorship invaded the islands, precipitating the deadly Falklands Isand War where many lost their lives to new modern weapons.

Current Falkland Islanders overwhelmingly want to remain British. They gained full British citizenship with the British Nationality (Falkland Islands) Act 1983, after the British victory in the Falkland Islands War.

Also, the current sovereignty of South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands is disputed between the United Kingdom and Argentina. The British Admiralty claimed South Georgia in 1775, and renamed the island 'Isle of Georgia' for King George III. These island(s) - South Georgia, the South Orkneys, the South Shetlands, and the Sandwich Islands where annexed in 1908 for their important whaling stations. And Britain has exercised de facto control with the exception of a brief interruption during the Falklands Island War in 1982 when the islands were partially occupied by Argentina. The on-going dispute started in 1927 when Argentina claimed sovereignty over South Georgia Island, and subsequently was expanded to included Argentina claiming the South Sandwich Islands chain in 1938. The islands have no indigenous population but hold major important wildlife, and currently only have around 30 inhabitants and scientists.

Falkland Islands

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