UK & World News
Falklands: Pope Asked To Intervene In Row
Argentina's President Cristina Kirchner says she has asked her fellow countryman Pope Francis to mediate in the row over the future of the Falkland Islands.
"I asked his intervention to promote dialogue between the two sides," Ms Kirchner told a news conference after meeting Pope Francis ahead of his inaugural mass on Tuesday.
She noted that Pope John Paul II had mediated in a similar conflict between Argentina and Chile in 1978 over the Beagle channel and adjoining islands - which prevented a full-fledged armed conflict.
Francis, the former Archbishop of Buenos Aires, was quoted as telling reporters in 2011 that the Falklands, known in Argentina as the Malvinas, are "ours".
Before he was elected pope, he had also been quoted as saying that Britain "usurped" the remote islands.
The British Prime Minister David Cameron said last week he does not agree with Francis' views on the Falklands.
Last week, 99.8% of Falkland Islanders voted to stay under British rule in a referendum - with Mr Cameron warning that Argentina should take "careful note" of the result.
But Argentina insisted the vote was illegal and pointless because the people had no role in deciding a dispute between two sovereign states.