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Montevideo, September 22nd 2018 - 03:28 UTC

Congress members from Spain's ruling party divided on the Gibraltar question

Thursday, May 3rd 2018 - 08:19 UTC
Full article 3 comments
A first “soft” motion formally tabled was replaced by a motion that put Spain’s sovereignty aspirations centre stage and adopted a much harder position on Brexit A first “soft” motion formally tabled was replaced by a motion that put Spain’s sovereignty aspirations centre stage and adopted a much harder position on Brexit

Internal divisions on Gibraltar within Spain’s ruling Partido Popular have been laid bare in two versions of a parliamentary motion to be debated in the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Spanish Senate on Thursday.

A first draft of the motion tabled by the PP reflected the change of tone on Gibraltar at Spain’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs, shifting the focus away from sovereignty and onto cooperation as a means of mitigating the impact of Brexit on the Campo de Gibraltar.

But the text was withdrawn three days after being formally tabled, to be replaced by a motion that put Spain’s sovereignty aspirations centre stage and adopted a much harder position on Brexit and the Rock’s future outside the EU.

It is not clear why the original motion was withdrawn, but the two versions of the text shine a spotlight on the known divisions within the PP on the issue of Gibraltar.

Categories: Politics, International.

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  • Brit Bob

    A first draft of the motion tabled by the PP reflected the change of tone on Gibraltar at Spain’s Ministry for Foreign Affairs, shifting the focus away from sovereignty and onto cooperation as a means of mitigating the impact of Brexit on the Campo de Gibraltar.

    The United Kingdom invited Spain to accompany her to the International Court of Justice in 1966 over Gibraltar's status, airspace, isthmus & territorial waters. Spain refused. Forgive me but I can't see a legitimate claim of sovereignty, can you?

    Gibraltar - Some Relevant Int. Law (1 pg) : https://www.academia.edu/10575180/Gibraltar_-_Some_Relevant_International_Law

    May 03rd, 2018 - 09:25 am +1
  • Conqueror

    @Brit Bob. I'm curious. Some while ago, I made a count of the number of times that Spain has “seriously” breached the Treaty of Utrecht in relation to Gibraltar. I didn't count all the numerous incursions into British Gibraltar Territorial Waters by Spanish nationals and Spanish state vessels. Or, for that matter, the number of unauthorised overflights or the number of times Spanish nationals have impeded the use of Gibraltar's airport by acting without consideration of the safety of aircraft.The chances are that the number of instances would run into the thousands.

    I wonder why Britain still considers itself bound by any of the provisions of the Treaty? For example, the one where, if Britain were to decide to relinquish sovereignty, it would be obliged to offer the sovereignty to Spain. Particularly in the light of the supposed current principles in the world that self-determination is the prime consideration.

    Is it not time that Britain declared that it takes the view that the Treaty of Utrecht has no force? That all future decisions and actions will be solely the province of Britain and Gibraltar?

    May 03rd, 2018 - 02:58 pm +1
  • Brit Bob

    Spain and Great Britain have followed the Treaty at their will, often ignoring some of the Treaty's provisions because of either inconvenience or the changing international sense of morality. Another anachronistic provision prohibited the British from grantingJews or Moors the right to reside in Gibraltar.Great Britain failed to comply, allowing both Jews and Moors to live as full citizens in Gibraltar.

    While the reversionary provision is outdated, Spain's territorial integrity with regard to Gibraltar simply has not existed since 1713. The international situation in 1713, as Chief Minister Bossano explained, differs from today's world in many respects. Various wars and treaties have caused drastic changes in international borders and national allegiances. An important aspect to the debate about territorial integrity with regard to Gibraltar is that the Moors, and not the Spaniards, first settled Gibraltar. According to the Spanish rationale, Spain's claim to Gibraltar would rank second to that of Morocco.

    Gibraltar's right to self-determination must include the right to represent its own citizens in negotiations with Spain. According to Resolution 2734, the reversionary provision should in no way prevent Gibraltarians from discussing its future status with Spain and Great Britain. (The Legal Status of Gibraltar: Whose Rock is it Anyway? Simon J. Lincoln∗ pg 326)

    I agree - Britain should openly declare that the Treaty of Utrecht has no force - it is merely the deeds to the property.

    May 03rd, 2018 - 03:56 pm +1
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