PORTSMOUTH MPs want Britain to stop lending millions of pounds to Argentina while tensions simmer over the Falkland Islands.
Penny Mordaunt, MP for Portsmouth North, and Mike Hancock, MP for Portsmouth South, have signed an Early Day Motion calling on the UK government to block further World Bank loans to the South American country.
It comes after months of renewed diplomatic tension between Britain and Argentina during the 30th anniversary of the Falklands War.
The parliamentary motion highlights that Britain’s share of World Bank loans to Argentina is some £128m from a total of £10.5bn of outstanding debt.
Despite taking British taxpayers’ cash, Argentina has led a ban on Falkland Islands flagged ships at South American ports, called on Chile to stop the only commercial flights to and from the Islands and accused the UK of military colonisation of the South Atlantic territory.
Ms Mordaunt said: ‘I don’t see why we should tolerate that kind of behaviour and be giving them aid and preferential treatment on loans.
‘If they want our money, they have got to address their obnoxious foreign policy.’
Three decades after Margaret Thatcher sent 27,000 troops and more than 100 ships to repel the Argentinian invaders, Buenos Aires continues to set its sights on the territory it calls Las Malvinas.
President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner has restating her country’s claim to sovereignty to the United Nations and personally confronted David Cameron at the recent G20 summit in Mexico.
The Prime Minister rebuffed her calls for negotiations and said it is up to Falkland Islanders to decide who they are ruled by.
Last month, the Falkland Islands government said it will hold a referendum next year in order to send a firm message to Argentina’s rulers that the 3,000 islanders wish to remain British.
Mr Hancock, who is recovering from open heart surgery in Southampton General Hospital, was unavailable for comment yesterday.