The Gibraltar Government would urge the UK to “stop Brexit completely” if MPs vote against Prime Minister Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement next week, Chief Minister Fabian Picardo said. Speaking to GBC after returning to Gibraltar from London, Picardo highlighted two important developments this week which he said had opened up new possibilities as the UK Parliament grapples with the Brexit divorce deal this week.1 comment
The Government of Gibraltar wishes to counter the untrue claims that there has been an agreement to allow the breaking of the Rock's marine protection laws by commercial fishermen. There is absolutely no truth to these claims.
After the end of the European Council meeting, the Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom to the European Union, Ambassador Sir Tim Barrow, has written to the Secretaries General of the Council and Commission of the European Union.
Preparations for a summit to endorse Britain's deal to quit the European Union risked running aground on the rock of Gibraltar on Friday, as Spain defended its veto over the fate of the tiny territory. Britain's PM Theresa May and leaders of the other 27 EU member states are to meet Sunday to approve their divorce agreement and set a course for negotiating their future post-Brexit relationship.
Theresa May will return to Brussels for Brexit talks this weekend as the UK and EU strive to do a deal in time for Sunday's summit of European leaders. After a two-hour meeting with EU officials, the prime minister said progress was being made on the future shape of EU-UK relations.
Spain will vote against the divorce agreement between the European Union and the United Kingdom unless Gibraltar’s future relationship with the bloc is considered a bilateral issue between Madrid and London, rather than between the EU and UK, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has said.
The Government has noted the comments about Gibraltar made by the Foreign Minister of Spain this morning following a meeting of the General Affairs Council of the European Union.
The Chief Minister has immediately been in touch with the Prime Minister’s office in Downing Street.
Spain has said it will not agree to the draft Brexit withdrawal deal without clarity over how talks on the future status of Gibraltar should be handled. Foreign minister Josep Borrell insisted that talks about the territory were “separate negotiations”.
The proposed Withdrawal Agreement published on Wednesday by the United Kingdom and European Union makes it clear that its terms, including the transitional period, will apply to Gibraltar. According to a release from the Gibraltar government “this was the number one priority of the Cabinet and of the Government and it has been achieved. It means that Gibraltar will not crash out of the European Union in March 2019 and that things will largely remain as they are until the end of 2020”.
Gibraltar will step up its contingency planning as from January 1, 2019, if there is no certainty of a Withdrawal Agreement and implementation period by that date, Chief Minister Fabian Picardo told an influential House of Lords select committee. Addressing the EU Select Committee, he also signaled his hope that Gibraltar, the UK and Spain could salvage elements of the Gibraltar negotiations even in the event of a ‘no deal’ Brexit between the UK and the EU.