Thirty years later, the Falklands War is being remembered -- services are being held in both Argentina and the UK to commemorate the 255 British and 650 Argentine soldiers who died in that brief conflict.
British Prime Minister David Cameron said in a statement marking the 30th anniversary: Thirty years ago today the people of the Falkland Islands suffered an act of aggression that sought to rob them of their freedom and their way of life.Today is a day for commemoration and reflection: a day to remember all those who lost their lives in the conflict -- the members of our armed forces, as well as the [Argentine] personnel who died.
On April 2, 1982, 30 years ago, Argentine forces landed on the British Falkland Islands, located in the South Atlantic just 1,100 miles from Buenos Aires. They seized the islands two days later, claiming them to be a rightful part of Argentina's territory.
In response, the UK dispatched the Royal Navy and landed troops to the islands, where they re-established British rule after two months of fighting.
Today, the Falklands Archipelago remains a self-governing overseas British Territory.
Yet even on this day of remembrance, renewed tensions have arisen over rightful ownership of the territory. Argentina has restated its claim to control the islands -- saying that it had inherited rights to them from Spain. Argentina calls the islands Las Malvinas.
Yet, Cameron, in the speech commemorating the victims of the war, warned Argentina and the world that the UK had different plans for the islands.
According to his statement, the UK has always believed that the Falkland Islanders must be in control of their own future:
Britain remains staunchly committed to upholding the right of the Falkland Islanders, and of the Falkland Islanders alone, to determine their own future, he said.
He added, That was the fundamental principle that was at stake 30 years ago: and that is the principle which we solemnly reaffirm today.
Argentina has asked the UK to grant the Falkland Islands sovereignty -- a request the British government has refused, it says, until there is agreement from the islanders. Yet, without sovereignty, it will be very difficult for them to decide their own future.