"In 1713, the Peace and Friendship Treaty of Utrecht between Spain and Great Britain ratified Spain's control over its territories in the Americas, including the Falklands. "
How? Spain had no interest/claim in/over the Falklands in 1713. Not even France did then! It is OK saying that the Treaty of Utrecht ratified Spanish control, but where is the text showing that?
The "Peace and Friendship Treaty of Utrecht between Spain and Great Britain" does say in Article I:
"and that the same be so sincerely preserved and cultivated, that neither party do, under any colour whatever, endeavour to attempt any thing to the destruction or detriment of the other, or yield any aid, by what name soever it be called, to there who attempt the same, or who endeavour to do any damage, neither may or ought they to help them by any means. On the contrary, their Royal Majesties shall be obliged the one to promote the advantage, honour, and interest of the other, and to direct their councils to that end with all care, that by mutual proof of friendship, the peace which is now made may daily receive new additions of strength."
So, straight away, Spain interfering in an affair between France and GB, *is* interfering to the detriment of both France (who lost their claim), and GB (by disputing theirs), and therefore Spain violated the first Article.
Article VI says:
"The Catholic King doth further promise, as well in his own name as in that of his heirs and successors, that they will not at any time disturb or molest the said Queen of Great Britain, her heirs and successors, of the Protestant line, as aforesaid, being in possession of the crown of Great Britain, and the dominions subject thereunto; neither will the aforesaid Catholic King, or any of his successors, give at any time any aid, succour, favour, or counsel, directly or indirectly, by land or by sea, in money, arms, ammunition, warlike instruments, ships, soldiers, seamen, or in any other manner whatever, to any person or persons, whosoever they be, who on any cause or pretence should hereafter endeavour to oppose the said succession, either by open war, or by encouraging sedition and forming conspiracies against such Prince and Princes, who are in possession of the throne of Great Britain, by virtue of the acts of parliament there made, or against that Prince or Princess to whom the succession to the crown of Great Britain shall belong, according to the acts of parliament, as abovesaid."
"Catholic King" refers to the Spanish King Philip. Again, Spain's interference in France/GB affairs, is clearly in violation of this article too.
"That the ordinary distribution of justice be restored and open again through the kingdoms and dominions of each of their Royal Majesties, so that it may be free for all the subjects on both sides, to prosecute and obtain their rights, pretensions, and actions, according to the laws, constitutions, and statutes of each kingdom...."
Well, Argentina are clearly in violation of this, but I suspect they will only call on the Treaty when they thing it suits!!
Article VIII does talk about restoring Spanish territory in the West Indies to how it was before the war, but again, that is the West Indies (the Falklands are not in the West Indies), and regardless of "flexible" geography, the Falklands were not Spanish before, or during the war.
The entire text is here:
But I can't see anything that supports Spain's claim. If anything it looks to do the exactly opposite.
I am off for a week, but thanks for the discussion William, it has been informative!