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Montevideo, May 26th 2018 - 23:37 UTC

Algeciras mayor highlights 'English occupation' of Gibraltar and the Falklands

Wednesday, April 9th 2014 - 07:03 UTC
Full article 105 comments
Landaluce participated of a twinning ceremony at the city of Rio Grande, Tierra del Fuego during the 32nd anniversary of the Falklands war Landaluce participated of a twinning ceremony at the city of Rio Grande, Tierra del Fuego during the 32nd anniversary of the Falklands war

The mayor of the Spanish town of Algeciras, Jose Ignacio Landaluce flew back this weekend from Argentina, where he had attended a twinning ceremony with Rio Grande, Tierra del Fuego that sought to highlight the ‘English occupation’ of Gibraltar and the Falkland Islands.

 The mayor, whose trip drew flak from the Spanish PSOE opposition in the Algeciras town council, also attended a series of events to commemorate the 32nd anniversary of the Argentine invasion of the Falkland Islands.

Last Friday Landaluce addressed the twinning event and spoke about the environmental and cultural ‘similarities’ between Algeciras and the Rio Grande. But a section of his message centered on Gibraltar and the Falklands.

“There is another characteristic that unites us, and does so through a pain that brings us close, very close, something that is ours, and that is our territory,” he reportedly said.

Landaluce said both countries had made their claims in the UN and other international forums “…in the knowledge that conversations between sovereign states must also listen to the populations that live in the two colonies.”

“Here the Falklands, and 11,000 kilometers from where we are, the Rock of Gibraltar,” he said. “Brothers from Rio Grande fervently hoping to see a white and blue flag over [the Falklands], and us maintaining a sovereignty claim for over 300 years.”

The mayor’s trip was sharply criticized in sections of the British press and in Algeciras itself, where the twinning move was only revealed on the eve of the mayor’s trip.

Andrés Dachary, the official responsible for international relations in the Rio Grande municipality, reflected on the negative coverage that the twinning event had generated.

“What justifies such as disproportionate response?” he asked, according to reports in the Argentine media. “We believe this proposal has touched a nerve and introduced a rule of play that did not exist in the logic of the Rock of Gibraltar and the Falklands.”

“The potential that this has is what has unleashed this response.”

When it was first unveiled in Rio Grande last November, the municipality’s top official, Gustavo Melella, said that both cities shared a common feature. “Part of our land is occupied by the English,” he told Argentine reporters at the time. “We are in the same situation”.

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  • Vulcanbomber

    Perhaps the UK needs to start banging the drum about the occupation of Ceuta and Melilla.

    Maybe Gibralter could twin with a town or two in the catalan area, could be funny, perhaps the Falklands ould twin with Gibralter, some catalan towns and Munich, as they seem to be interested in splitting from Germany at some stage

    Apr 09th, 2014 - 07:21 am 0
  • Anglotino

    The UK, Gibraltar and the Falkland Islands for have to do diddly squat.

    You could have every single official from both Spain and Argentina say the same thing and there will be no effect. They are on the wrong side of history. The existence of these two nations is now permanent and neither Spain nor Argentina has ever given a single reason for them to join their neighbours. Nor trust them.

    The UK will one day lose sovereignty over these two BOTs. However the result won't make Spain or Argentina any happier (or bigger).

    Apr 09th, 2014 - 07:45 am 0
  • Zool

    Spain is trapped in the EURO & many in its government want out but they are in a financial prison, powerless to do anything while they watch their country deteriorate. What better way to get out than destroy the foundations of the EU & further undermine the membership of Britain, one of the few non Euro members who's already on verge of leaving & who's departure would cause the collapse of the EU freeing Spain.

    Apr 09th, 2014 - 08:59 am 0
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