Outrage after Spain given ‘effective veto over future of Gibraltar’ in EU Brexit plans

LAST UPDATED: 31 Mar, 2017 @ 14:01
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gibraltarSPAIN has been accused of trying to take back Gibraltar after draft Brexit negotiation guidelines reveal it is being given an effective veto over the Rock’s future.

The guidelines state that any Brexit deal will not apply to Gibraltar without an ‘agreement between the Kingdom of Spain and the UK.’

British officials are said to be taken by surprise, with one describing the move as ‘absolutely unacceptable’.

An official told the Telegraph: “One really wonders why the EU has thought it sensible to put in something that’s a bi-lateral issue between Spain and the UK.”

Vice Chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Gibraltar Andrew Rosindell said: “An agreement without including Gibraltar means there can be no agreement.

“British people must and will stand together, we cannot be bullied by Spain, any agreement must apply equally to the whole British family and that includes Gibraltar. There can be no compromise on this.”

The draft  guidelines for withdrawal say: “After the United Kingdom leaves the Union, no agreement between the EU and the United Kingdom may apply to the territory of Gibraltar without the agreement between the Kingdom of Spain and the United Kingdom.”

Gibraltar has been a British Overseas Territory since 1713 and is home to 30,000 residents, 97% of whom voted to stay in the EU last June.

UK MPs warned last year that Spain’s increasingly aggressive behaviour towards the Rock was a ‘threat’ to British security and that is behaviour as a NATO ally was becoming ‘increasingly unreliable’.

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34 COMMENTS

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  1. This is why May was right not to agree any rights to EU citizens living in the UK.
    Everyone talked about not using citizens as pawns but the people of Gibraltar 99% of which voted to remain British,are being used just as that.

  2. The DRAFT Guidelines refer to AFTER the United Kingdom leaves the EU. I don’t see how this refers to the Brexit negotiations.

    I cannot see the other countries allowing Spain a veto on any “deals” that they may wish to make.

    • Paul, remember the deal MUST be ratified BY ALL 27 remaining members so yes, Spain will veto it, speciall since Brexit turned us into the 4th largest economy of the group.

  3. Well done Brexiteers, so now the people of Gibraltar (who voted to Remain in the EU by 96%) are going to face months or possibly years of uncertainty. You knew the risks but you ignored them.

    So what are the so called great advantages of Brexit looking like so far: swapping EU workers for non-EU workers and that’s about it. Keep it rolling.

  4. It is just as predicted before the vote. But then was stupidly labelled by an ad agency slogan as project fear. Now you see that it wasn’t. It was as warned. As was Scotland wanting to leave, and skilled EU people leaving the NHS. As was the pound dropping in value.

    What wasn’t expected was the chinese running our trains and building our power stations.

  5. I think people living in Gibraltar should consider what life would be like if they gave Gibraltar back to Spain – an EU country that will allow then access to free healthcare etc. I would prefer that if I lived on the rock by far! They’re are lots of British enclaves on the costa that are just that very British – not much would change on the rock except that you would stay EU members with all its benefits and privileges. The Spanish are just great – what’s not to like!

    • The spanish are just great except for very many of their politicians, who like politicians everywhere, are cut from a different cloth.

  6. I’m happy for you that you think the Spanish are great.

    But, no money in this world, no rights, nothing will ever under any circumstance will make me give up my nationality and home just to be more ‘comfortable’. My grandfather fought in the 2nd world war so that people in the UK like you and people in Gibraltar like me are free from the chains of tyranny.

    NOTHING will make me give up my nationality and home, not EU membership or all the money in the world.

  7. If gibraltar became spanish that would financially spell problems for gibraltar as the first thing spain would do is put vat on drink and tabbaco so goodbye to all the duty free and that would lead to much less people visiting the rock and spending their money.

    • I did never understand why goods from Gibraltar are called “cheap”, only because they are sold free of VAT.
      I found that most of those goods are more expensive in Gibraltar than in Germany. Germany obviously is part of the EU and charges 21% VAT.
      Therefor, if Gibraltar may remain in the EU, that should not have negative consequences for the price level of Gibraltar but perhaps for the profit of those British companies that deliver goods to Gibraltar

  8. gibraltar being spanish would spell financial problems as the first thing spain would do is put vat on drink and tabbaco. that would mean bye bye to duty free so much less people would vist the rock and spend their money.

    • You really believe the wealth of Gib. is based on duty-frees Craig? That’s merely window-dressing. Tax-free financial services are what fetch in the wealth. That’s what Spain is keen to get it’s greasy mitts on.

  9. just spain throwing it’s teddy out of the pram cos we said no to joint sovereignty, one more hurdle to jump, nothing will change….next!

  10. The important thing here, not only for Spain but for the whole EU, is not the sovereignty but the full control of the border.
    Nobody wants a smugglers paradise, tax haven and illegal gambling den in your doorstep.
    But now they are out of the EU, out of the single market and with a strictly controlled frontier, their days are numbered.

  11. It is not that difficult to understand.
    The frontier will be closed or strictly controlled, like Britain wants.
    No freedom of movement is mandatory when your neighbour (gibraltar) is a tax haven, a smugglers paradise and an illegal gambling den.
    Finally, gibraltar will have to return the isthmus and the surrounding waters back to Spain since they are NOT included in the Treaty of Utrecht.
    The dream is over , macaques.

    • Ol’ Blue Eyes and Pablo. It’s over, Article 50 has been activated, the dreadful Brit’s are leaving and no more gravy for the other 27 states, that is until they also start leaving. As for Gibraltar, Spain can shout, scream and try every trick in the book (which they have tried for years) but Gib will always be part of the UK. As for the EU trying to interfere it was the worse choice they could have made. They are trying everything to dislodge the UK but they don’t really know what being British is about. Pablo, pleased to hear you are in Gibraltar, so it’s still there after many petty closures, one period being 13 years but it appears you are still standing on British soil today. The closure devastated the La Linea region with 9000 or more Spaniard’ crossing the border for work every day. La Linea Mayor has stated further closure would ruin the town of La Linea completely as another 9000 would join the long existing unemployment line for bread and honey. As for Germany, would be interesting to know what sales of Mercedes, BMW, VW etc be in Romania, Bulgaria and other bankrupt EU countries will be. Thousands of jobs alone will be lost due to no sales in the UK, which happens to be their biggest customer. Keep dreaming. Da.

      • Carlos…Carlos…as always you talking nonsense…
        Let’s analyse your post:
        “but they don’t really know what being British is about”
        Being British is basically crying for the US to help them.
        Not big deal, no?

        “The closure devastated the La Linea region with 9000 or more Spaniard’ crossing the border for work every day.”
        What you dont know, and it is NOT a surprise, is that the vast majority of those “workers” are llanitos.
        All that those “workers” have to do is to move to gibraltar and, voilá, problem solved.

        “As for Germany, would be interesting to know what sales of Mercedes, BMW, VW etc be in Romania, Bulgaria and other bankrupt EU countries will be.”
        In less than 1 (ONE) year the british will not be even able to buy food.
        What Mercedes, BMW etc are you talking about?

        Mon Dieu….hillbillies

  12. The UK will answer by incorporating Gib into the UK. Gibraltar will become an official part of the United Kingdom and spain will have to go and whistle.
    I’m in Gibraltar right now and the EU flag is being torn down and used as toilet paper…

  13. I feel sorry for the poor people of La Linea and Algeciras they already have 40% unemployment due to their countries economic mismanagement so if Spain forces a border closure then it will double. Unfortunately their goverment has already washed their hands of their own people to follow a obsession.
    If Spain had acted in a mature manner over the past 40 years ( education / sporting exchanges )this generation might have voted for Spainish citizenship but as Spain only wants to block, pressure and push lies so they voted 99.1% to remain British .

    Both sides will lose out not because of Brexit but because the EU have given the immature goverment an adult veto to play with.

    Spain has been given the most EU development funds of all the members and what didn’t get squirilled away ( 900 million in Seville meant to help the unemployed ) was spent on nice new roads in the campo …. can we ask for this to be deducted from this 60 billion they are asking for or we could have remained and kept on paying for this corruption as someone has to ….. not me thanks

  14. In my opinion the actitude of the Spanish goverment is absolutely justified. Gibraltar is a British colony in Spanish territory ,in decolonization process, that acording the UNO resolutions must be returned to spanish sovereignity, and is necessary to avoid situations that will perjudice this proces.

    Discussions about poverty or corruption or will of the Gibraltarians are completly irrelevants. Because the states do not change their frontiers acording these factors.

    Besides Spanish Kingdom must retain the facultiy of to close the fence, acording the Utrech Treaty.

  15. Well chas, you being an American should well know what democracy means and in the UK “all” political parties including the Tory’s are democratically voted into office by the people which can be changed by the people every five years. This does not happen in the EU example being, can you name at least three people that stood for the Presidency of the European Commission. I think you will find there was just one which happens to be Jean-Claude Juncker. (A backdoor stitch up)

    I believe in your own country, at a guess, there were 16/17 major candidates for the Republican party nominee and 6/7 from the Democratic party which the American people voted for to be the next President which can be changed as in the UK. I would call that demoracy don’t you. If not, you have been living in Spain too long and tyranny can easily influence people.

  16. chas, a little snippet for you to ponder on regarding democracy.

    “We need reform at the EU institutional level, both to streamline the structure of the European commission and tackle the democratic deficit by making the European parliament more responsible and accountable for legislation and budgetary oversight. People may never fall in love with an internal market, as Jacques Delors allegedly once claimed, but they might eventually lend grudging support to an organisation that delivers results”. Guy Verhofstadt

    • Viscount de Tocqueville, the French diplomat suggested in Democracy in America that the genius of democracy could sometimes be the same as the tyranny of the masses: what to do when an uninformed electorate chooses an evil, incompetent or corrupt government. The US, UK and Spain all seem to be suffering from what Tocqueville feared.

    • Tocqueville suggested the genius of ‘democracy’ could be equivalent to mass tyranny if uninformed voters elect corrupt or incompetents. UK, US and Spain seem to have done so.

    • Viscount de Tocqueville suggested in Democracy in America that the genius of democracy could be the same as the tyranny of the masses when an uninformed electorate chooses an evil, incompetent or corrupt government as we have in US, UK and Spain.

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