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Falklands holds vote over UK status

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The population of the Falkland Islands is going to the polls on Sunday and Monday in a referendum on whether to remain a British Overseas Territory.

Argentina has constantly reiterated its claims to the islands, 30 years after it was repelled by a British Task Force in a 74-day conflict.

The islanders decided to hold the vote in response to Argentine pressure for negotiations over sovereignty.

The tiny community is expected to overwhelmingly back remaining British.

But a "yes" vote backing the status quo is unlikely to resolve the dispute.

Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has said the inhabitants' wishes are not relevant in what is a territorial issue.

Most Argentinians regard the islands, which they call Las Malvinas, as Argentine and their recovery is enshrined in the national constitution, Kazinform has learnt from BBC News.

Falkland Islanders will have their voices heard in the referendum, with 1,672 people eligible to vote out of the islands' total population of about 2,900.


March 11 2013, 10:15

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