UNITED NATIONS - Argentina's President Cristina Fernandez made a highly unusual appearance at a UN decolonization committee on Thursday where she argued that the Falklands Islands are Argentine territory and should not be under British rule.

Fernandez's decision to speak to a committee that is typically the realm of mid-ranking diplomats is the latest move in her wide-ranging diplomatic offensive to assert her country's claims to the islands, known in Spanish as Las Malvinas, which are part of Britain's self-governing overseas territories.

UN envoys said Fernandez had asked the Special Committee on Decolonization to hold a session on the islands on June 14, the 30th anniversary of Britain's victory in 1982 in a 10-week war over the Falklands that ended Argentina's brief occupation there and led to the collapse of its military dictatorship.

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