Falkland Islanders to Vote on Status
The islanders decided to hold the vote in response to Argentine pressure for negotiations over sovereignty.
Some 1,672 British citizens – out of a population of about 2,900 – can vote.
Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has said the inhabitants’ wishes are not relevant in what is a territorial issue.
Most Argentines regard the islands, which they call Las Malvinas, as Argentine and their recovery is enshrined in the national constitution.
While I understand the long-term claim by Argentina over the islands, and the nationalistic politics that surround that claim, I have to confess it is rather difficult to get around the fact that the people living on the island do not have any connection to Argentina, nor do they wish any. And given that the actual dispute over the territory is based in actions almost two hundred years ago, the basis for ousting these residences and/or transferring sovereign control over them seems flimsy at best.
Of course, the bottom line is that there will be no transfer of control and Argentines will continue to assert claims.