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Argentina’s southern province of Tierra del Fuego, Antarctica and the South Atlantic Islands – which claims the Malvinas as part of its territory – has denounced British construction company BAM Nuttall for operating from the region without authorization.
In a statement, the regional government suggested the company had been hired by the “illegitimate” island government to carry out the design and construction of a new port in the region.
The government said the work did not have “proper intervention” from Tierra del Fuego’s Ministry of Production and Environment.
They said the UK intended to turn the port of Malvina into a logistics support center in an effort to move forward in the “plunder” of the islands’ natural resources.
The complaint against the construction company was lodged by the provincial secretariat of the region, Andres Dachary, before the environment secretary of Tierra del Fuego.
Falklands fury as Argentina erupts in ‘criminal and illegitimate’ UK (Image :.)
Falklands War Grave (Image:.)
Mr. Dachary argued that the Malvinas and their surrounding maritime areas are an integral part of the province of Tierra del Fuego and are subject to the laws of the provinces and the country.
He said: “The fact that they are momentarily overrun by the UK, in no way prevents us from taking action against those who break the laws.”
Tierra del Fuego Minister of Production and Environment Sonia Castiglione said the Provincial Environment Secretariat will send a notification to BAM Nutall.
She said: “From that point on, the company will have a definitive response time and depending on what happens, the legislation is clear and opens a series of legal actions.”
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Tribute to the Falklands War (Image:.)
Last year, the Malvinas government announced that BAM Nutall would design and build a new port in the archipelago’s capital.
Tensions between Argentina and the UK reached a boiling point after the Latin American country imposed sanctions on two UK companies.
Argentina last month imposed sanctions on three companies – including two British ones – for alleged illegal exploitation of hydrocarbons in waters north of the Falklands.
Argentina has claimed it does not have permission from its government, which claims British overseas territory as theirs.
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Argentine Energy Secretaries Dario Matinez and Malvinas, Antarctic and South Atlantic Secretaries Daniel Filmus said: “These companies are not allowed to operate and have not requested any kind of authorisation.
The secretaries said they were “committing a crime in Argentina” and the three companies continued to participate in exploration and exploitation work.
The oil companies are Britain-based Chrysaor Holdings Limited and Harbor Energy Plc, and the Israeli company Navitas Petroleum LP.
Companies had several days to respond to Argentina, but if they do not, the country will proceed with their disqualification.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson (Image:.)
Any disqualification would prevent them from participating for a period of five to 20 years in tendering processes to operate in waters off Argentina’s continental shelf, officials said.
Argentina and Britain fought a war in 1982 for domination of the archipelago, in which the South American country was defeated.
The conflict lasted 74 days and ended with an Argentine surrender on June 14, returning the islands to British control.
A total of 649 Argentinian servicemen, 255 British servicemen and three Falklands Islanders died during the hostilities.
Tribute to the Falklands War (Image:.)
Diplomatic relations between the United Kingdom and Argentina were reestablished in 1989 following a meeting in Madrid, in which the two governments issued a joint statement.
In 1994 Argentina adopted a new constitution, which declared the Falkland Islands by law as an Argentine province.
However, the islands continue to function as a self-governing British Overseas Territory.
Additional reporting by Maria Ortega