Skip to Content

Chief Picardo, The Rock
London

Brexit heads for the rock of Gibraltar

A European Council document on Friday suggested that Spain now has the power of an effective veto on whether the Brexit deal applies to a part of strategic British territory south of Spain.

Published: April 3, 2017, 10:22 am

    Read more

    Gibraltar has become a very valuable bargaining chip in Brexit negotiations between the EU and Britain after EU guidelines made it clear that Spain will be supported in any trade or sovereignty dispute involving British overseas territory.

    The residents of Gibraltar have voted almost unanimously, by a margin of 96 percent, to remain in the EU.

    Gibraltar’s MEP, Clare Moody, said Britain’s failure to mention Gibraltar in the Article 50 letter triggering Brexit, had emboldened the Spanish. Spanish MEPs and diplomats are said to have been thrilled that made no mention of Gibraltar was made.

    On Wednesday, the Gibraltar administration said they would fiercely oppose any Spanish moves to use Brexit negotiations as a means to gain more control over the territory. “Our sovereignty is not in play. We will be no pawn in Brexit and no victim of Brexit.”

    Gibraltar’s chief has insisted the Rock will remain part of Britain despite reports that prime minister Theresa May ignored his wish to mention the peninsula in her Article 50 letter to the EU last Wednesday.

    “This is a disgraceful attempt by Spain to manipulate the European council for its own, narrow political interests. Brexit is already complicated enough without Spain trying to complicate it further,” Fabian Picardo, the chief minister of Gibraltar said.

    According to Downing Street, May had called Picardo on Sunday morning to say the UK remained “steadfastly committed to our support for Gibraltar, its people and its economy”. May told Gibraltar’s chief minister that Britain will never allow Spain to take control over the peninsula against its will.

    British officials were clearly taken by surprise, when they learned that the draft guidelines drawn up by EU leaders state that the Brexit deal will not apply to Gibraltar without an “agreement between the kingdom of Spain and the UK”.

    A senior UK source told the Guardian that the clause was “extraordinary” because it effectively signalled a total lack of British sovereignty over Gibraltar. The British government would never tolerate that, the source said.

    Another UK official told The Telegraph it is “absolutely unacceptable” and the measures give Spain too much leverage over the future of Gibraltar.

    But a senior EU official commented: “The union will stick up for its members and that means Spain now.” Residents of Gibraltar, which Spain has sought to reclaim for centuries, want to be part of the EU. Two referendums – in 1967 and 2002 – have shown that the overwhelming majority of residents wish Gibraltar to remain British however.

    A former Royal Navy commander meanwhile warned Spain that Britain could “cripple” them if a war was to break out over Gibraltar.

    Tensions regarding the future of the British overseas territory have risen after the EU proposal handed the Spanish government a veto on any decision regarding Gibraltar when the UK leaves the EU.

    “We are significantly more powerful than them, if it came to it we are probably three times more powerful than they are,” Rear-Admiral Chris Parry, a former director of operational capability at the Ministry of Defence, said. “We could cripple Spain in the medium term and I think the Americans would probably support us too.”

    Parry warned: “Spain should learn from history that it is never worth taking us on and that we could still singe the King of Spain’s beard.”

    Sir Michael Fallon, British Defence Secretary, has also declared his intent to “protect” Gibraltar “all the way”. Speaking to the BBC’s Andrew Marr show, Fallon said: “The people of Gibraltar have made it clear that they don’t want to live under the sovereignty of Spain. Gibraltar is going to be protected all the way.”

    Know as “The Rock”, Gibraltar has been a British Overseas Territory since 1713 with its 30 000 inhabitants. It has also been an uninterupted source of diplomatic squabbles due to its strategic position on the Mediterranean Sea, which is connected to the Atlantic Ocean, and almost completely enclosed by land.

    The Falklands War, also known as the Guerra del Atlántico Sur, was a ten-week war between another Spanish-speaking country Argentina and the United Kingdom in 1982, in which the UK went to war to protect its territory.

    Brexit is obviously frought with danger, as Scotland and Northern Ireland are both rising up against their English countrymen, to remain in the EU.

    The day after the Brexit victory, Spain’s foreign minister at the time, José Manuel García Margallo, said the outcome would hasten the return of the Spanish flag over the territory.

    Consider donating to support our work

    Help us to produce more articles like this. FreeWestMedia is depending on donations from our readers to keep going. With your help, we expose the mainstream fake news agenda.

    Keep ​your language polite​. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in​,​ for example​, ​Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.

    If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violation​s​ of​ any​ law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.

    If your comments are subject to preview ​by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.

    We reserve the right to del​ete​ comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.

    Europe

    Interview with Alexander Dugin – ‘Welcome all newcomers!’

    Prof. Alexander Dugin, philosopher and geopolitical expert from Russia, sees the world changing: the old liberalism is being replaced by a new, aggressive, globalist mutation. Manuel Ochsenreiter's interview with Dugin gives a fascinating insight into the globalist future.

    Legal expert condemns Dutch patience for jihadists

    RotterdamA case that is representative of the ongoing Islamization of the Netherlands has exposed the Dutch tolerance for Islamic extremists, argues Paul Cliteur, a distinguished law professor in the Netherlands from Leiden University and a defence witness for Geert Wilders when Wilders was on trial for “hate speech”.

    German PEI greenlights Pfizer citing insufficient data after myocarditis reports

    BerlinThe new report by the Paul Ehrlich Institute (PEI) states that there is still "no clear picture" between cases of myocardial inflammation and Pfizer/BioNTech vaccinations. Mainly young men are affected. Notably, myocarditis can trigger a life-threatening arrhythmia or lead to cardiac arrest.

    AfD inquiry into refugee policy making waves in Hong Kong

    BerlinAn inquiry from the Eurosceptic AfD to the German federal government regarding the "German refugee policy towards the Chinese special administrative zone Hong Kong and the granting of asylum status" has apparently caused a sensation reaching as far as Southeast Asia.

    Education and immigration are main primers for voter choices

    ParisThe economists Amory Gethin, Clara Martínez-Toledano and Thomas Piketty, who work at the World Inequality Lab at the Paris School of Economics, asked some interesting questions in a study published in early May. The three researchers collected data from several Western democracies. Immigrant voters distinguish themselves by choosing the left.

    New Austrian conservative strongman calls into question arbitrary Corona rules

    ViennaFormer Austrian Interior Minister Herbert Kickl (FPÖ) is considered the new strong man in his party, slated to take over the leadership soon. In an interview translated from ZUERST! Kickl explains how he wants to bring the FPÖ back to being the top party.

    Swede gets kicked in the head by immigrant gang but media conceals the facts

    SkövdeAt Vasaskolan in Skövde, a brutal assault occurred in May, when a student received blows and kicks to the head by seven attackers. In the local media, important facts were concealed: The abuse is part of an increasingly tense ethnic conflict between Swedish young people and immigrants from Skövde's ghetto Södra Ryd.

    Macron slapped in the face: ‘He got what he deserved’

    ParisCNews star Eric Zemmour commented on the slap received by French President Emmanuel Macron on June 8, 2021. While condemning the slap given to Macron, the journalist and columnist considered that the President of the Republic "got what he deserved" because Macron "himself has desecrated the function".

    Macron slapped in the face by royalist

    Tain-l'HermitageDamien Tarel, presumed author of the aggression against the French president, and Arthur C. were arrested by the gendarmes of the Surveillance and Intervention Platoon of the Gendarmerie (PSIG) of Valence. They were presented, according to one source, as “yellow vests”, a fact which was denied by the public prosecutor.

    Alarming number of bankruptcies due to lock-down in Germany

    BerlinAlice Weidel, the co-leader of the AfD noted the alarming number of people who have filed for personal bankruptcy since the Corona pandemic began.

    Go to archive