BRITAIN and Spain were plunged into a fresh round of diplomatic tension after four Spanish jets allegedly flew into Gibraltar airspace
The Matador jets were described as flying very close to the north end of the Rock. A British Airways flight was delayed by 12 minutes.
The Gibraltar Government reacted angrily to what they described as another incursion into British territory. This comes soon after the incident of the Guardia Civil shooting at a Gibraltarian jet ski and a Spanish patrol boat sailing into Gibraltarian waters the following day.
“The Government of Gibraltar has called on the UK to take up the matter of this military incursion into the airspace of Gibraltar at the highest diplomatic and military levels,” No.6 Convent Place said in a statement. British officials in the Convent have already taken up the matter.
Britain’s Ministry of Defense, however, said that they had no evidence that the Spanish planes had entered Gibraltar airspace. In a statement, Headquarters British Forces said the BA flight was “…held on the runway for approximately 12 minutes by Air Traffic Control in Seville to allow Spanish aircraft to pass by in Spanish air space.”
“There is no evidence to suggest that the aircraft flew into Gibraltar air space,” it added.
Spain is currently holding a military exercise in the Mediterranean, and the aircraft were returning to the aircraft carrier Juan Carlos I.