Hague: Argentina 'bullying and intimidatory' on Falklands

Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth William Hague. Credit: David Jones/PA Wire

The Foreign Secretary has accused Argentina of "bullying and intimidatory" behaviour over the Falklands and he insisted the islands would remain British for centuries.

William Hague dismissed claims from Argentinian counterpart Hector Timerman that the Falkland Islands would be controlled from Buenos Aires within 20 years.

Mr Hague said the suggestion was a "fantasy" and said the tactics adopted by Argentina were counter productive.

On a visit to London last week Mr Timerman refused to attend a meeting with the Foreign Secretary because representatives of the islanders were present.

But Mr Hague told The Sun: "This is a community that is nearly 200 years old. They seem very determined to remain British.

"If there's any chance they would change their minds, the approach by Argentina is completely counter productive.

"It only fortifies the islanders' determination to stay British. It is only going to add to the decades and centuries that the Falklands will remain British."

Mr Timerman told reporters that as far as Buenos Aires was concerned, Falkland islanders do "not exist".