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PM pledges support for Falklands

David Cameron has voiced Britain's continued commitment to defend the sovereignty and security of the Falkland Islands.

In his Christmas message to the islanders, the Prime Minister said the referendum earlier this year in which they voted by 1,513 to three in favour of remaining British "could not have sent a clearer message".

He condemned Argentina's "shameful" attempt to deter oil exploration in Falklands waters through a new law imposing heavy jail sentences and fines, even though Britain is adamant the islands are not subject to the measure.

Mr Cameron said: "As we look to 2014, you can count on the British Government's continued support in countering the Argentine government's campaign to claim the islands' resources and to inflict damage on your economy.

"My message on this is clear: you have every right to explore your natural resources. The Argentine Government's attempts to deter you from doing so will not succeed."

He concluded: " The British Government will remain steadfast in its commitment to your sovereignty and security. The Argentine Government will never succeed in any attempt to misrepresent the history of your islands or question your right to self-determination.

"Britain will always be ready to defend the Falkland Islands."

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