Minister declines talks with Argentina

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Foreign Office Minister Jeremy Browne has turned down an invitation to attend talks in Argentina when he visits the Falklands next week.

The Foreign Office said it was “grateful” for the invitation but said Mr Browne had “a full schedule of events” on the islands commemorating the 30th anniversary of the Falklands War.

A Foreign Office spokesman said that while Britain wanted to build a “stronger partnership” with Argentina, it was not prepared to enter into discussions over the sovereignty of the islands.

“We have today received an invitation from Argentina’s foreign minister, Hector Timmerman, for Mr Browne to visit Buenos Aires next week,” the spokesman said.

“However he has a full schedule of events in the Falkland Islands to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the conflict there. This has been arranged for some time.

“Mr Browne is grateful for the invitation. The UK has a long-standing interest in building a stronger partnership with Argentina on a broad range of issues of mutual interest.”