Reaction from Giles Chichester MEP
The UK will not enter into sovereignty arrangements or negotiations with which Gibraltar is not content was the response of Foreign Office Minister David Liddington to the Spanish Government request for talks with the UK, but excluding the Government of Gibraltar, on issues concerning Gibraltars sovereignty. The Spanish offer of dialogue remains on the table and Gibraltar will undoubtedly be on the agenda when Spanish Foreign Minister Garcia Margallo meets with our Foreign Secretary William Hague next week. The UK Government is clear, however, that no decisions can be reached without Gibraltars involvement.
In the meantime, to emphasise their desire for urgent talks on the Gibraltar issue, the Spanish authorities are stepping up a campaign of harassment on the frontiers of the Rock. Ignoring EU rules concerning the free movement of people within the European Community, Spanish police and customs officials have increased border controls over those entering or leaving the Rock. Vehicles are taking up to 3 hours to make the crossing and there are long pedestrian queues a situation which is harmful to the economies on both sides of the border and contrary to the spirit and letter of the Cordoba agreement.
There is also renewed conflict on fishing rights in Gibraltar waters despite the mutually beneficial 1999 agreement reached with Spanish fishermen. This situation is being aggravated by the Spanish Guardia Civil and customs whose launches are entering Gibraltars waters and provoking confrontations with Royal Navy patrol boats.
The last time that Spain used this harassment strategy was in 2010 when I sought the assistance of Foreign Secretary Hague and European Commission President Barroso to resolve the dispute. Now the Spanish Government is banging the drum to distract its people from their terrible internal economic situation and little Gibraltar is an easy target. Unfortunately the Spanish authorities seem to have been infected with a similar tactic to that being deployed by the desperate President of Argentina against the Falklands. The tragedy is that this situation can only threaten the livelihood of people on both sides of the Gibraltar frontier and will have little impact upon the UK Government position.
We are committed to protecting the sovereignty of the people of Gibraltar and will continue to endeavour to maintain good relations with the Spanish Government. However, they must accept that all negotiations must take place in a Trilateral Forum comprising representatives of the UK, Spain and Gibraltar.
Giles Chichester MEP
Conservative MEP for South West England and Gibraltar
Add to Facebook Add to Twitter Main News
Refer http://www.gibnews.net/cgi-bin/gn_view.pl/?CONP120525_1.xmlRead More!
- Government takes a very serious view of threats from Spain
- GDP officers return from Olympics
- Gibraltar’s Net Sales Increase 5% and Income from Continuing Operations Grows 10% in Second Quarter
- Jubilee Beacon shines out from the Moorish Castle
- Government reaction to Hague/Margello meeting in London
Chichester from Giles Reaction
- GIBRALTAR: Mayor presents beautification award to residents, business
- Gibraltar Savings Bank
- HMG does not undertake meetings that constitute the Bilateral Process on Gibraltar
- HMS Sutherland conducts security patrols in BGTW
- Christmas Fair success
- GSD Asks Bossano to Calm Down
- Ministerial statement by William Hague
- Chief Minister meets Prime Minister in Downing Street
- GSD Continue Concerned over Macaques
- Royal Gibraltar Regiment MTP, medals and Movember
- Two Men Receive Prison Sentences for Indecent Assault
- Gibraltar Take Part in First European Draws
- Disability Movement Puts Things Right
- PDP hold Annual General Meeting
- Gibraltar Solutions Named as a Top Employer in the Greater Toronto Area!
- Newton creative awards 2012 – Music
- 39 months for Grievous bodily Harm with Intent
- GSD says ‘Government accusations of Cheating at the last elections are as foolish as they are false’.
- The Royal Gibraltar Police is Awarded the Bronze Level in Investors In People
- Handbags and gladrags event raises 570 pounds for women’s refuge