The dispute over the South Atlantic islands has taken a Hollywood twist as Sean Penn last night expressed his support for Argentina’s cause.
The actor from the United States is in Argentina in his role as ambassador at large for Haiti and met with President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner at the Casa Rosada yesterday. He urged Argentina and the United Kingdom to engage in discussions.
“It’s necessary that these diplomatic talks happen between the United Kingdom and Argentina,” he said. “I think that the world today is not going to tolerate any kind of ludicrous and archaic commitment to colonialist ideology.”
In a strong sign of support for his host nation, he also used the Argentine name for the islands.
“I understand that it’s a very sensitive moment [in terms] of diplomacy related to the Malvinas for Argentina and the United Kingdom,” he said.
Both Penn and Fernández de Kirchner reiterated that the purpose of the visit was to discuss Argentina’s aid for Haiti, but his comments about the Falklands have unfortunately grabbed the headlines.
Argentina has voiced their disapproval over the apparent militarisation of the islands, while the UK is maintaining that no discussions need to take place as long as the residents of the Falklands want to remain British.
The diplomatic row has escalated to such a level that it has caused UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon to express “concern about the increasingly strong exchanges.”