Riz Khan
Falkland Islands or Islas Malvinas?
Tensions are rising between the UK and Argentina over the territory and its oil.
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2010 09:13 GMT

Tensions are flaring between the UK and Argentina over the Falkland Islands – and this time oil is involved.

The two countries waged a short but bloody war over possession of the islands 28 years ago. Argentina seized them for two months but was expelled by a British naval force.

For Argentines, the Islas Malvinas represent a colonial enclave 300 miles off their border.

The issue remained on the backburner until last month, when a British oil rig arrived to begin exploration drilling.

Geologists estimate that there are up to 60 billion barrels of oil around the islands.

Margaret Thatcher, then the UK's prime minister, used the 1982 war to stir up British patriotic fervor, restoring her own teetering fortunes and bringing her government back to power in elections the next year.

Now Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, Argentina's president, is thought by some to be whipping up her countrymen's patriotism, as the affair has ignited intense emotions in Buenos Aires.

On Wednesday we speak with Alberto Pedro D'Alotto, a top aide in Argentina's Foreign Ministry, and Douglas Hurd, a veteran British politician who was minister of state at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office at the time of the 1982 war.

This episode of the Riz Khan show aired on Wednesday, March 17, 2010.

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