The Government will present the “Malvinas Agenda”: there will be more than 100 actions for the 40 years of the war

Monument with the map of the Falkland Islands, in the city of Ushuaia (photo file: EFE / Leo La Valle)

The national government will present this Monday the “Malvinas 40 Agenda″ In an official act for the fortieth anniversary to be celebrated in April due to the Malvinas War, where 649 Argentine soldiers fought and died in 1982. The initiative will mark the beginning of the diplomatic and political deployment that President Alberto Fernández will carry out during this 2022, in which he will seek to strengthen the country’s position to open a negotiation path with the United Kingdom for the sovereignty of the archipelago.

The appointment is at 6:00 p.m. at the Malvinas Museum and has a federal and interministerial nature. The participation of officials from various areas of the Cabinet, referents from the southern provinces, legislators and members of the Council of Affairs Relating to the Malvinas Islands, municipal leaders, Argentine ambassadors abroad, and groups of veterans and former combatants are expected to participate. Who is behind the trades is the secretary of Malvinas, Antarctica and South Atlantic, Guillermo Carmona, which depends on the chancellor Santiago Cafiero.

With the motto “Malvinas unites us”, The call occurs on the first business day of the year, an unorthodox and difficult date in which both politics and the population are thinking more about vacations and summer than government events. However, the decision to move forward with the initiative weighed because it coincides with another anniversary: the 189 years of the first British invasion of the archipelago in 1833. It was the first time that the English forces, when the British corvette Clio appeared in Puerto Soledad and evicted the Argentines who lived on the islands.

The “Malvinas Agenda”Which will be launched on January 3, includes the realization, throughout the year, of more than 100 activities and actions on the territorial issue. It is a federal and “multidimensional” initiative, with the mission of meeting three objectives: honor the combatants and their families during the war; the visibility and awareness of the historical, legal and geopolitical arguments that Argentina maintains about the archipelago; and the call for the resumption of dialogue and negotiations with the United Kingdom through peaceful means, as established by the UN resolutions on the dispute.

The schedule of activities, events and celebrations will be disseminated through an official website, which will also include archival audiovisual material and bibliographic sources. The preparation of the agenda was arranged after four meetings of the Interministerial Work Table, presented on November 19 by President Alberto Fernández.

President Alberto Fernández at the launch of the Interministerial table for Malvinas (Presidency)
President Alberto Fernández at the launch of the Interministerial table for Malvinas (Presidency)

The “highlight” of the agenda is diplomatic deployment that, once again, The Government will promote before international organizations such as the United Nations (UN), the Organization of American States (OAS) and other regional forums such as Mercosur or the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC). The international community usually accompanies the claim even from other transnational entities, such as the Group of 77 and China, the Africa-South America Summit (ASA) and the South America-Arab Countries Summit (ASPA).

In recent months, the novelty in foreign policy management has been linked to the reinstallation of Support Groups for the Malvinas Question, made up of personalities and cultural references from each country to demand that conversations about the dispute begin. That policy, which was discontinued during the government of Mauricio Macri, came to have as allies the Anglican archbishop, Nobel Peace Prize winner and anti-apartheid activist, the South African Desmond tutu, who passed away in the last few days. Peru is one of the most committed groups, although the Foreign Ministry, they clarify, they are receiving interest from European Union universities.

In the framework of the 40th anniversary, the central milestone of the year will be the commemorative date of April 2, coinciding with the start of hostilities with the United Kingdom. By that time, there will most likely be different initiatives. President Alberto Fernández will have an active participation in the commemoration. One of the most important and emotional activities is the traditional vigil carried out by Malvinas veterans in the cities of Río Grande and Ushuaia in Tierra del Fuego.

With the presidential endorsement, half of the cabinet ministries contributed to the development of the “Malvinas Agenda”, which will have a repertoire of diplomatic, social, cultural, academic and even sports activities throughout 2022. Due to the nature of the theme , some of the officials who will have more work and exposure are the Chancellor Santiago Cafiero, the Minister of Culture, Tristan Bauer and the Minister of Defense, Jorge Taiana, who have already confirmed their participation in the event on Monday.

The governor of Tierra del Fuego, Gustavo Melella, together with Secretary Guillermo Carmona in a tribute to combatants from the Falkland Islands (Credit: @WalterVuotoTDF)
The governor of Tierra del Fuego, Gustavo Melella, together with Secretary Guillermo Carmona in a tribute to combatants from the Falkland Islands (Credit: @WalterVuotoTDF)

In the schedule, actions were defined that also involve the ministries of Education; Science Technology and Innovation; Inside; Public Works; Sightseeing; Culture and the Chief of Cabinet, through the Media Secretariat. The province of Tierra del Fuego also played an active role, in charge of the governor Gustavo Melella, and the Argentine Federation of Municipalities (FAM) chaired by the mayor of Tafí Viejo, Javier Noguera.

According to diplomatic sources, the deployment of the “Malvinas Agenda” will not have budget reinforcements and each ministry it already has the resources to carry out the planned actions.

With that activity diagram, Will there be a specific policy for the inhabitants of the islands? The Ministry of Foreign Affairs indicated that the position is “to respect the way of life of the islanders.” For years, the Argentine State has maintained a sustained policy of reestablishing the link between the continent and the islands, despite the resistance of the United Kingdom for this to happen. The offer of the Executive Power to resume flights to the archipelago, through the flag carrier, for Chilean stranded in the archipelago pursues that objective, although the proposal goes beyond the claim of sovereignty. “We do not want it to be mixed with the commemorative agenda,” they clarify from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Dates, history and diplomacy

The first British occupation of the archipelago in 1833 is part of the arguments that the Argentine State uses to demand sovereignty of the territory. The only historiographical controversy prior to that milestone dates back to the founding of the Port Egmont fort in 1765, when the United Kingdom installed a colony on the islet known as Saunders.

According to the presentation of the Argentine ambassador José María Ruda, before the Subcommittee III of the United Nations in his well-known argument of September 9, 1964, British colonization of 1765 was later voluntarily abandoned by the United Kingdom. Soon after, it was occupied by the Spanish crown through the government of the Malvinas Islands, dependent on the General Captaincy of Buenos Aires.

(DEF file)
(DEF file)

The historical reconstruction that Ruda presented to the UN indicates that the Argentine settlement in the Malvinas Islands was peaceful and consensual. Between 1767 and 1811, 32 Malvinas governors succeeded each other. During a long period there were pacts of coexistence in that area of ​​the Atlantic with the British government, such as the signing of the Treaty of Friendship, Commerce and Navigation, in February 1825. The beginning of the reproaches and proposals would only occur in 1829, after the governor of the province of Buenos Aires, Martín Rodríguez, resolved to create a political and military command based in Puerto Soledad. It is within this framework that the first British military invasion takes place four years later.

The commemorative dates are a key instrument to reinstall the agenda. In the Government they want to present it, also, from its reverse: the forty years of the war coincide with the fortieth anniversary of UN Resolution 37/9, which maintains that the war did not alter the nature of the sovereignty dispute. This 2022 also marks a decade since the declaration of Ushuaia, the document in which all the political forces unanimously approved the islands belonging to the national territory.

In this framework, the Government aims to transform the “Malvinas Agenda” into a mobilization of the entire society. That is why they take care of the words: they do not want it to be “a bell”, A concept pejoratively associated with politicization and that in the recent past was questioned by the opposition.


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The Government will present the “Malvinas Agenda”: there will be more than 100 actions for the 40 years of the war