Oil exploration off Falklands turns up poor quality crude

Last Updated: Tue, Mar 30, 2010 08:40 hrs

/EFE) A British oil company searching for crude oil in the waters around the disputed Falkland Islands has said that initial exploration turned up poor quality crude.

Exploration in a well dug in the North Falkland Basin has found hydrocarbons in thin intervals but its quality is poor, Britain's Desire Petroleum said in a statement Monday.

The search for oil in the area, which Argentina says Britain is illegally occupying, has once again led to a potentially volatile situation between the two countries, which fought a war over the islands nearly 30 years ago.

Argentina has said it will take up the matter with the UN.

Britain's Rockhopper and Desire Petroleum are exploring for oil in the area, operations for which were expected to be completed later this week.

The extent of oil and gas reserves in the area will not be known until the exploration results are reviewed, the statement said.

The Falkland Islands, which may hold up to 60 billion barrels of crude oil, have been a bone of contention between Britain and Argentina, a report by British media said.

Troops from the South American country first invaded the Falklands on April 2, 1982. The islands, which have been in British hands since 1833, saw full-fledged fighting on May 1, 1982, with the arrival of a British task force. The fight ended 45 days later with the surrender of Argentine forces.

At least 1,000 people were killed in the conflict including over 700 Argentines and 250 Britons.



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