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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

UK, Argentina clash over nuclear submarine comment

Deputy Prime Minister of Britain Nick Clegg (C) gestures as he walks with officials after his arrival to participate at the 2012 Seoul Nuclear Security Summit.
Britain has officially denied sending a nuclear-armed submarine to the South Atlantic region today. Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg dismissed what he called ''baseless insinuations'' during a speech at the international Nuclear Security Summit in Seoul, South Korea.

According to the international media, a spat broke out between Britain and Argentina during the summit when Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman accused an "extra-regional power" of sending a submarine capable of carrying nuclear weapons to the South Atlantic.

Timerman's words prompted Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg to rewrite his speech at the summit and open with a denial. "I'm afraid I'm duty bound to respond to the insinuations made by the Argentinean delegation of militarisation of the South Atlantic by the British Government," he said.

"These are unfounded, baseless insinuations," the official claimed. “Argentina seems keen to rattle cages in any way they can," he added.

"As I'm sure our colleague from Argentina knows, the United Kingdom ratified the protocols to the treaty in 1969, the treaty referred to by President Pinera which guarantees a nuclear weapons-free zone covering Latin America and the Caribbean,” he explained.

“We have respected those obligations since 1969 and we will continue to do so," Clegg said during his speech.

Last month, Argentina complained to the United Nations over what it called Britain's "militarisation" of the South Atlantic after London announced plans to dispatch a Navy destroyer to the area and it criticised the posting of Prince William to the islands as a military search-and-rescue pilot.

 

 

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Tags:  UK  Malvinas  Falklands  US  Timerman  Clegg  





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