UPDATE 2-UK slams Argentine plan to seize Falklands oil driller assets
(Adds quotes from British foreign office minister)
By Andrew Osborn and William James
LONDON, June 29 (Reuters) - Britain on Monday accused Argentina of a politically motivated and illegal attack on the nascent oil industry around the disputed Falkland Islands, after Buenos Aires said it would seek to seize the assets of drillers operating in region.
On Saturday, a federal judge in Tierra del Fuego ordered the seizure of $156 million in bank accounts, boats and other property belonging to six European and U.S. oil companies operating in the islands.
Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman was quoted in the local press on Sunday as saying his country intended to pursue the case as part of its claim to the islands' sovereignty.
Britain, which counts the islands as one of its overseas territories, rejects any such Argentine claims.
"This politically motivated decision to target company assets is a wholly unacceptable attempt to exercise extra-territorial jurisdiction, and has no legal justification whatsoever," said British foreign office minister Hugo Swire.
He said Argentina was conducting a "flagrant and unacceptable campaign to strangle the Falkland Islands hydrocarbons industry."
"This action, aimed at British and international oil and gas companies, has dangerous implications for global business." Continuación...