Spaniards escorted from Gibraltar ‘for own safety’

LAST UPDATED: 8 Jun, 2012 @ 14:06
25
SHARE
Spaniards escorted from Gibraltar ‘for own safety’

By James Bryce

A group of Spaniards has been kicked out of Gibraltar ‘for their own safety’ after angering patriotic locals celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Police escorted the tourists to the border after a 50-strong mob surrounded them, claiming to have been provoked by one of them kissing the badge on his Spanish national football shirt.

A police spokesman compared the provocation to ‘going round Tel Aviv celebrating Hitler’, despite the group, from Sevilla, claiming not to have been aware of political tensions between Spain and the Rock.

“You have to understand the climate between Gibraltar and Spain at the moment, it is not the best, particularly with the fishing dispute,” a spokesman for Royal Gibraltar Police said.

“People are hyper-sensitive at the moment and you can compare it (kissing the badge) to going round Tel Aviv celebrating Hitler.”

The spokesman confirmed that two members of the Spanish group were taken to a police station but no arrests were made.

“It was the Jubilee weekend with Union flags everywhere and everyone in high spirits, but the incident created a tense atmosphere, some people took offence and temper’s flared.

“We explained the situation to them and told them the best thing to do in the circumstances is go back to Spain.

“It would not have been a good idea to stay in Gibraltar. We moved them for their own safety,” he added.

Inmaculada Rueda, her boyfriend Jaime Berjarano and three friends had been killing time in Gibraltar ahead of an evening football match in the nearby Spanish border town of La Linea.

“We were walking down Main St and we saw a man with two parrots, one on each shoulder.

“Jaime placed himself to have his photo taken, and it was then he kissed the shirt,” Rueda said.

“People were shouting ‘go back to your own country’ and we felt physically threatened, it was shameful.

“I’ll never go back to Gibraltar.”

25 COMMENTS

The Olive Press are not responsible and do not moderate individual comments before they are posted. Anyone who uses racist, sexist, homophobic or xenophobic language or hate speech will be blocked.
  1. For ‘mob’ read ‘crowd’ or ‘throng’. These people were celebrating the jubilee as others were in London. The Spanish press has made a huge fuss about their football shirts being ‘banned’ but in fact a Main Street sports shop actually displays and sells (to Spanish tourists) the Spanish national football team shirt in Gibraltar itself and Spanish visitors (and regrettably English ones) wear these routinely, perhaps more commonly than they would in Spain, no doubt to seek to provoke us, although I can’t recall any instances of them being assaulted. I find that offensive of course. The badge has the Spanish royal coat of arms and it is in that name that Spain claims sovereignty over Gibraltar and persecutes Gibraltarians and others who disagree with them.

    The policeman’s analogy was admittedly a bit OTT, but we have indeed been subject to a lot of provocation and demonisation by the Spanish media. If we were Palestinians or a religious minority the Spanish media would have been accused of hate crimes, but it seems that because Gibraltarians are a Mediterranean people with British citizenship, anything goes.

  2. The article does not say that the man also shouted “Gibraltar Espanyol”. Also it was very handy that was an El Mundo photographer in the vicinity. Of course he knew what was being celebrated. This appears to be a set up.

  3. I thought Gibraltar was a friendly, welcoming place put upon by it’s big bully neighbour. Perhaps in reality the Llanitos will also jump at the opportunity to bully and intimidate the little guy when the odds are in their favour? Why is it regrettable that people support their national football teams? If the visitors behaviour is polite and respectful shouldn’t the hosts reflect that? Would you be better off lowering your behaviour to the level of those in the Spanish media you are so contemptible of or treating visitors impeccably and giving the media nothing negative to report? The next time I visit Gibraltar it will be with a group of Spanish friends I’ve convinced Gibraltar is not full of pirates, smugglers and criminals. That it’s a friendly welcoming place to all. If you prove me wrong it’s your loss and our shame.

  4. I tend to agree with both Juanacalpe and Ben, it could have been a set-up designed to attract hostile elements of the Spanish Press, but at the same time loutish football-type behaviour towards anyone of any nationality is a disgrace, Jubilee or not.
    Nationalism can be a positive force, but past history (WW2 etc.) proves otherwise when unrestrained.
    Let’s all just be Europeans and celebrate each others special occasions.
    One example, most Brits living here celebrated Spain winning the World cup.

  5. How dare these Spaniards enter British territory and expect tolerance and freedom of expression. If they want to be treated with civility and consideration, they should stay in Spain — just like we all do.

  6. In my experience Gibraltarians get on very well with their Spanish neighbours, probably better than with English tourists. It’s not surprising there are strong feelings on both sides, especially after the anti-Gibraltar campaign in the Spanish media.

  7. It was not the football shirt that caused offence – we have our own footy fanatics and are well used to it – it was only when he started yelling “Gibraltar Espanyol” that people responded and were understandably upset. The Police did the right thing by escorting Jaime away before any possible escalation could take place.

  8. Is not true that you can enter in any european country if you are european citizen??. Gibraltar has to understand that we are living together. The Gibraltarians has houses in the south of spain.
    Why gibraltarians are welcome to enter in spain and the spaniards not in Gibraltar???
    I have lived in england for three months and it was useful experience in my live. They were very kind but why the gibraltarians are not the same??.
    Is the problem of the “british” waters of gibraltar. I think you have to learn what is the treaty of utrech. The king of spain only with the soverinity of castel, port and the tiny rock. Even when we start the agreements since 1982 giving them airport, the neutral territory, more phone cables etc.. they want more. I don´t understand them.
    If we´re very kind with they still hate us.

  9. Leo – so you are saying that you want to invade a sovereign nation and forcefully expel some 30,000 people, committing a genocide, violating numerous human rights laws and certainly starting a war with the United Kingdom. Good plan.

  10. Thanks Leo, hardly ever have I read so little words describing the Spanish “flaw” that keeps the whole nation down ….

    You badly want to do something that you simply can not do.

    You neither have the balls, the means, the heart, the mind …..

    In other words you have a form of impotence that no little blue pill can help you with.

    Must be frustrating indeed, maybe the first way to a better and more satisfying live is to accept things the way they are.

    As they say no dog is happy sleeping in his masters bed – he just pretends, actually feels lost and in reality would be much happier out there in his hut.

  11. It’s about time that the UK relinquished its imperialist toe-hold in continental Europe – the UN continues to list Gibraltar as a territory that needs to be decolonised by the UK.

    It is beside the point to refer to the treaty of Utrecht as this treaty created the British colonial enclave in the first place. Moreover, British occupation of the isthmus and its failure to implement all of its provisions means that the UK is in breach of the treaty.

    The UK cannot ignore international law by relying on a treaty which it has itself invalidated by its own actions.

    Moreover, it is pure obfuscation to insist, as the UK does, that the current inhabitants of Gibraltar have a right under the principle of self-determination to remain British and still live in Gibraltar.

    Under international law there are territorial limitations
    to the right of self-determination for transplanted populations living in colonial enclaves where a pre-colonial claim of sovereignty exists. This is the case with Gibraltar.

    A coloniser cannot legally disrupt the territorial integrity of another State by implanting its own population unto the territory it is colonising. In cases such as these, the inhabitants of the territory have a right to have their ‘interests’ considered but they have no right to unilaterally determine the nationality of the land they live in.

    Both the UN and ICJ have confirmed that the principle of territorial integrity complements and CONSTRAINS the right to self-determination in cases such as Gibraltar.

    The UN has repeatedly invited the UK to participate in discussions to achieve the de-colonisation of Gibraltar.

    Unfortunately, the UK continues to rely on a discredited interpretation of the principle of self-determination to turn a deaf ear to those requests in a clearly self-serving way.

    It’s worth noting that the current British enthusiasm for the principle of self-determination in the case of Gibraltar, and the Falklands for that matter, was certainly not matched by the response to the inhabitants of Diego Garcia, also a British Overseas Territory, who were evicted by the UK in 1971 against their wishes because the United States wanted the island as a military base.

    The reason why there are territorial limitations to the right of self-determination for transplanted populations living in colonial enclaves is because otherwise it would be lawful for a group of people from say Ireland to establish an Irish colony on the eastern coast of England and then claim a right under the principle of self-determination to have the land they are occupying declared a part of Ireland.

  12. I am very proud of Gibraltar and its people. the Spanish held Gibraltar in the last war it would have defiantly resulted in more Nazi U Boats destroying the allied navies and even led to the down fall of Malta. In the Cold war Gib monitored soviet submarines. And even now along with GHQ in Cyprus keeps a eye on terrorists in North Africa. And I can assure from talking to a friend at Airborne forces weekend in Aldershot UK that certain Special forces and Pathfinders were practising water jumps off Gibraltar for a week last month ago…but you didn’t know that my Spanish friends

  13. LMAO

    Steve you are lost, Gibraltar keep an eye on the terrorist s money you mean?
    As it is well known that gibraltar is one of biggest terrorist hideout for money laundry.
    For every british that evade taxes in gibraltar is less money that goes for your armed forces or National Healthcare.
    Good Job!!!
    At this rate of tax evading the royal navy will become the royal puddle navy

  14. Admiral Lezyo

    Thank you for your concern of a few British subjects avoiding tax in Gibraltar. However I wont be asking a Spanish accountant or bank to sort it out as there are enough problems with Spanish citizens Morgague repayments, employment, social services and a thing called “Euro debt bail-out” If I am not mistaken the Spanish government next week are asking the European union for more money to save their bankrupt economy!!. The Royal navy has a huge aircraft carrier “HMS Queen Elizabeth 2” being constructed at the moment, so no real problems there then. Terrorists are finding it nearly impossible to launder money anywhere these days especially Gibraltar due to regulations since 9/11. And no, you can’t have Gibraltar back, unless you stop the traffic queuing, stealing the fish and then if you ask nicely we might talk about it..

  15. @ Admiral Lezo… Hello, how are you today? How’s the leg? I see that you continue to be your jolly self telling tall tales. Never mind, nobody really listens to “certain” old salts, they tend to invent a lot of things to make themselves interesting.

  16. GIBRALTAR IS SPANISH LAND THE INHABITANTS HAVE COLONISED,AIRCRAFT CARRIER WOW SO IMPRESSED BY THAT THE SPANISH HAVE THERE BOATS AND GUNS TOO WE CAN FIRE MISSILES TOO.GROW UP PLEASE ,SPAIN AND THE UK ARE ALLIES?( NATO)

HAVE YOUR SAY...