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Falkland Islands

Volume 713: debated on Monday 26 October 2009

Question

Asked by

To ask Her Majesty's Government what lessons they have learned from the recent humanitarian visit of Argentine next of kin to the Falkland Islands. [HL5748]

The Governments of the UK, Falkland Islands and Argentina worked together to ensure the success of these visits, under the formula on sovereignty in the UK-Argentina joint statement of 14 July 1999. We have always supported the humanitarian aims of these visits, and thus were determined to overcome any logistical barriers. We are pleased that those aims were achieved.

Argentine next of kin are free to visit the Darwin cemetery and memorial whenever they so wish, either by using the regular scheduled LAN airlines flights or on the cruise ships that regularly visit the islands. Many have already taken advantage of this, with around 3,500 Argentine visitors last year. The Falkland Islands Government have also looked favourably upon the idea of further specific next of kin visits in March 2010.