On Monday, a United Kingdom military plane, which was heading from the Malvinas Islands to its home nation, stopped in Montevideo to stock up. The event generated a new claim from the government of the neighboring country to the Uruguayan Foreign Ministry – which had already happened in previous years – because by virtue of Argentina’s historic claim on the territory in the Atlantic Ocean, it was agreed that they can only make stopover humanitarian flights from those islands.
The information was released by Télam agency and confirmed by the newspaper based on Argentine diplomatic sources. “This year there were five flights [from or to the Malvinas that made a stopover in Uruguay] and according to the commitments between the two countries they can be strictly referred to humanitarian issues. The request to the [Uruguayan] chancellery is that they anticipate us when they are made and inform us of their character, ”explained a source.
He recalled that Uruguay always supported the Argentine proposal on the Malvinas, and that Mercosur spoke out “against the militarization of the South Atlantic”, so British military flights should be “limited as much as possible.”
Telam’s note recalls that in July of last year, when Argentine Foreign Minister Felipe Solá met with the Uruguayan ambassador in that country, Carlos Enciso, he requested information about flights to the Malvinas that make a stopover in Uruguay.
In turn, the Argentine ambassador to Uruguay, Alberto Iribarne, pointed out at the beginning of 2020, when he went to the Senate to endorse his designation, that during the last year of Mauricio Macri’s government there were “13 military flights from Uruguay to the Malvinas Islands , which violates a kind of tacit agreement “, because” the only possibility of supplying British planes in Uruguay was when it came to emergency matters “.
Monday’s stopover was made by an Airbus A330 MRTT aircraft, an in-flight refueling tanker manufactured by the Airbus Military company, based on a passenger transport model. The Royal Air Force – the British air force – calls them KC 2 Voyager and, according to Télam, they are essential to sustain the operation in the Malvinas Islands of the squadron of Eurofighter Typhoon fighter jets, which protect the British base over the Atlantic. The Airbus increases the scope of protection through refueling and also serves to support an airlift that supplies the logistics needs of the island, located more than 12,000 kilometers from London.