15 May, 2024 @ 12:34
1 min read

UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron to visit Brussels this week in what could be the ‘final push’ toward Gibraltar agreement with Spain

THE UK’s foreign secretary and former prime minister, David Cameron, will visit Brussels on Thursday in a bid to ‘strengthen the UK-EU relationship’, as well as to ‘progress Gibraltar negotiations’. 

The meeting is expected to be a ‘final push’ toward an agreement that will cover the relationship between the 27 EU countries and the British Overseas Territory, which is located on the southern tip of the Iberian peninsula.

According to the UK authorities, Cameron will ‘co-chair the Trade and Co-operation Agreement Partnership Council alongside Executive Vice-President of the European Commission Maroš Šef?ovi?’ and will also ‘welcome the close relationship the UK shares with the European Union’ post-Brexit.

While in Brussels, the foreign secretary and Vice-President Šef?ovi? will ‘discuss progress towards a UK-EU treaty on Gibraltar’ alongside Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares and Gibraltar Chief Minister Fabian Picardo. 

Read more: Many complex hurdles for Fabian Picardo to overcome as UK fears losing sovereignty and Spain worries ‘tax haven’ Gibraltar will ‘colonise’ El Campo

Fabian Picardo and David Cameron in a file photo.

Spanish diplomatic sources told news agency Europa Press that the objective of this second meeting is to ‘move forward on the main outlines’ of an agreement that is aimed at bringing ‘prosperity, confidence, legal certainty and stability to the citizens of the entire Campo de Gibraltar’, in reference to the Spanish comarca that borders Gibraltar. 

Sources also told Spanish newspaper El Pais that the final agreement is likely to protect sovereignty claims of both the UK and Spain over the contested territory, it will involve the demolition of the border post on the Gibraltar border known as La Verja, and will include a series of regulations, some of which could take years to implement.

The same sources said that all sides involved in the negotiations have agreed that checks on travellers arriving in Gibraltar will be carried out by the European Frontex agency, and that the same travellers will be able to circulate in the Schengen free-travel area once they have arrived in the British Overseas Territory. 

Simon Hunter

Simon Hunter has been living in Madrid since the year 2000 and has worked as a journalist and translator practically since he arrived. For 16 years he was at the English Edition of Spanish daily EL PAÍS, editing the site from 2014 to 2022, and is currently one of the Spain reporters at The Times. He is also a voice actor, and can be heard telling passengers to "mind the gap" on Spain's AVLO high-speed trains.

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