'Highly unlikely' Argentina will invade Falkland Islands

It is highly unlikely Argentina will attempt to invade the Falkland islands, according to Defence Minister Andrew Robathan.

Robathan explained the Argentinian military was not the same power as it was under General Leopoldo Galtieri, when the Falklands were invaded in 1982.

Stanley, Falkland Islands. Credit: Emma Hallett/PA Wire/Press Association Images

TheGovernment "retained the ability" to re-enforce its military presencein the Falklands, ahead of a referendum on the islands on February 11 as towhether they should remain under British rule, he said.

He added: "We all very much hope, and indeed expect, that the referendum willenforce the relationship between Britain and the Falkland islands. This is ofcourse a Falkland islands' initiative.

"I think it is highly unlikely that the Argentinians will invade the Falkland Islands, not least because there is a clause in their constitution I understand which specifically excludes invading the Falkland Islands by force."