The Falklands Naval Station (Spanish: Apostadero Naval Malvinas) was the main base of the naval component of Argentina in the Falklands Islands (or Malvinas Islands), during the South Atlantic conflict of 1982.
The Falklands Naval Station was a naval port facility of the Argentine Navy, established on April 2, 1982 by the Sea Fleet Command; having been located in the town of Port Stanley , the main port and population center of the Falklands Islands. The unit was established in the buildings near the East Pier of Port Stanley, although part of the staff was also commissioned to other places in the capital and the rest of the archipelago. The first and only commanding officer was frigate captain Adolfo Aurelio Gaffoglio and the unit was dissolved de facto with the end of the 1982 conflict.
Initially, its purpose was to provide logistical support to the naval units operating in the Falklands but as the Falklands War developed, its activities extended to undertake missions of all kinds. Argentina had not been in a war since the 19th Century and as a result, the force marked a number of milestones in the history of Argentina's Naval Force, including the anchoring of naval mines and the launch of Exocet MM-38 missiles in a coastal defence role using an improvised launcher.
Sailors from the command were tasked with manning the small coastal craft seized from the Falkland Islands Government and Falkland Islands Company. On 1 May 1982, Islas Malvinas GC82, an Argentine Z-28 type naval patrol boat was damaged near the Kidney Island by a Westland Lynx HAS.Mk.2/3 helicopter from HMS Alacrity, the British helicopter (XZ720) was also damaged by fire from the armed coaster Forrest. During a mission carried out by Monsunen to resupply the garrison at Port Stanley from Fox Bay, the small Argentine vessel was engaged by British naval and air forces during the Battle of Seal Cove. Although compelled to temporarily abandon the ship when it ran aground, it refloated on the incoming tide and with assistance from the Forest they were able to complete the resupply trip. In the closing moments of the war, seamen from the unit were deployed as infantry supporting the Argentine marines and engaged the SBS and SAS during the diversionary raid on Port Stanley Harbour.
The ships stationed at this base included:
- ARA Bahía Buen Suceso
- ARA Isla de los Estados
- ELMA Formosa
- ELMA Río Carcarañá
- PNA Islas Malvinas
- PNA Río Iguazú
See also edit
- Westland Lynx (XZ720) preserved in the Fleet Air Arm Museum Archived 20 January 2022 at the Wayback Machine
- El Apostadero Naval Malvinas en Internet, the website of the Veterans of the Falklands Naval Station (Spanish)
- La "unidad olvidada" de la Guerra de Malvinas, article about the unit and its members, by Loreley Gaffoglio (Spanish)
- Armada Argentina (Spanish)
- Mayorga, Horacio A. (1998). No Vencidos. Buenos Aires: Planeta. ISBN 950-742-976-X.
- Muñoz, Jorge (2004). Poker de ases en Malvinas. Buenos Aires: Instituto de Publicaciones Navales del Centro Naval. ISBN 950-899-050-3.
- Muñoz, Jorge (2000). Misión cumplida. Buenos Aires: Epopeya. ISBN 987-98061-0-7.
- Muñoz, Jorge (2017). Apostadero Naval Malvinas. Buenos Aires: Argentinidad. ISBN 978-987-1942-81-7.
- Mozzarelli, Antonio José (1996). in Boletín del Centro Naval Nº 783. Buenos Aires: Centro Naval.