Election '97: Labour denies any Falklands sell-out

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Some suggested that the Tories might need a small foreign war to overhaul Labour's poll lead,and last night it looked as though they might have found just that.

Tory Party officials highlighted a copy of today's Janes Defence Weekly in which it is claimed that Tony Blair had agreed to review the status of the Falklands.

"After wrapping himself in the Union Jack, it looks pretty bad," said one Tory Party official.

The newspaper reported that Jorge Dominguez, the Argentinian Minister of Defence, had said the transfer of the Falklands to Argentina would be assured by the outcome of the election. It said Guido Di Tella, the Argentinian Foreign Minister, had met Mr Blair.

But Labour denied that Mr Blair had changed British policy or had even met Mr Di Tella. "It is utter and complete nonsense, there is not a shred of truth in the suggestion that there might be a change of policy towards the Falklands," a Labour source said.