Fri Oct 21, 2016 08:30AM
Members of the Quebracho leftist group burn British flags in front of the British embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina, to protest British military maneuvers on Malvinas Islands, October 20, 2016. (Photo by AFP)
Members of the Quebracho leftist group burn British flags in front of the British embassy in Buenos Aires, Argentina, to protest British military maneuvers on Malvinas Islands, October 20, 2016. (Photo by AFP)
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Hundreds of people in Argentina have marched on the British embassy in the capital, Buenos Aires, to denounce the military drills being carried out by the UK on the Malvinas Islands, whose sovereignty has been a source of major dispute between the two countries.

The left-wing group, Quebracho, organized the demonstration, during which protesters marched toward the Monument to the Fallen in Malvinas with sticks before proceeding toward the British embassy.

They stamped on and then burned the British flag in front of the mission’s premises.

The demonstrators also censured the warming of ties between the government of President Mauricio Macri and that of British Prime Minister Theresa May.

Argentina and the UK fought a brief but deadly war over Malvinas — referred to as the Falklands by the British — in 1982, when London reasserted its claim to the sovereignty of the territory, which it had had an eye on since the 19th century. The UK has been considering Malvinas “British Overseas Territory” ever since the war.

During the Thursday march, tight security was provided at the British embassy, with dozens of policemen guarding the building, behind heavy steel barriers.

The UK last week notified Argentina that it would be conducting military exercises on Malvinas between October 19 and 28. The drills would see the firing of Rapier missiles.

Argentina complained to the UK that the war games contradict “the principle of the peaceful settlement of controversies supported unanimously by countries in the region,” calling the drills “illegitimate.”

Last month, Britain and Argentina agreed to work together toward removing the measures that have been restricting the oil, gas, shipping and fishing industries around the disputed islands.

The Malvinas Islands are inhabited by about 3,000 people.