Gibraltar opposition Leader Daniel Feetham has urged a cooling down of the language in the row with Spain and confirmed that the GSD Opposition would agree to quadripartite talks with Spain so long as the Gibraltar delegation retained its own separate voice, vote and veto.
Interviewed by the Gibraltar Chronicle he also confirmed that whilst he would not remove the reef under pressure he would not rule out doing so as part of an overall agreement in Gibraltar’s interests.
Feetham went on the record saying that he would not have laid the reef had he been in power and would not have done so at the time it was laid. He said that the GSD values the “stability and security” of Gibraltar above environmental policy. But he said that the Government was entitled to lay the reef in BGTW even though it was to be expected that the Spanish side would react.
The Opposition leader said that, were he in power, he would not rule out removing the reef if it were “part of an overall agreement with the Spanish Government that guarantees stability and security for Gibraltar and for British Gibraltar Territorial Waters”.
But he said he would be against removing the reef under pressure from the Spanish Government or anybody else. He said Gibraltar needs to defuse the situation and stop the bravado so as to create a climate for political dialogue.
He said that such dialogue should preserve the elements of the tripartite talks namely “separate voice, separate vote and separate veto on all aspects”.
It does not matter whether it has three sides or four sides provided those fundamental pillars of tripartite are preserved.
Feetham said that the economy, the gaming industry and the finance centre are at stake in the current dispute and Gibraltar should move for a reasonable political situation for best interest of Gibraltar and UK as well as Spanish citizens affected by the crisis.
The thing now, he said to the Chronicle, “is to stop the inflammatory language”. On the private meeting with Picardo he said that Opposition will provide its views frankly.