SPAIN has made an official complaint to the British government after accusing Gibraltar of performing a ‘U-turn’ over the fishing ban.
Outraged officials in Madrid sent a memo to London reiterating their stance that the waters around the Rock were not ceded to Britain under the terms of the Treaty of Utrecht.
The protest comes just days after Gibraltar’s government announced it would be maintaining the ban on commercial fishing with nets in its waters.
After receiving the results of a preliminary report by marine experts, it claimed there were a number of ‘serious gaps in the data’ which were hampering further analysis.
It also said the report had identified a number of species that ‘may be over-exploited’ and that it was affecting catches.
The fallout led to long delays at the frontier, while a number of reports over the weekend suggested Spanish fishing boats had continued to flaunt the restrictions by fishing in Gibraltar waters.
La Linea mayor Gemma Araujo described the announcement as a ‘disappointment’ and called for negotiations to continue between the Spanish fishermen and officials in Gibraltar.
A spokesman for the fishermen slammed the findings of the report, accusing the commission of lacking ‘anyone with knowledge about fishing’.