SPANISH president Pedro Sánchez has warned his British counterpart Theresa May that if she wants to extend the deadline for Brexit, she needs to have a clear plan. “You can’t go forward by going around in circles;...
Spanish military craft orders British ships out of Gibraltar’s waters
A FRESH incident in the bilateral tug-of-war over Gibraltar sparked fury among the Rock’s government yesterday (Sunday) when Spanish Naval officers ordered British trade ships to leave the port.
Although Spain recognises – reluctantly – that the Rock of Gibraltar is under British rule, it continues to consider the waters off its coast to be Spanish, even though the United Nations dictates that the seas three miles from the shore belong to the same government as the land itself.
Spanish crafts have made incursions into British waters off Gibraltar in the past, making international headlines, and disputes over marine rights of way are relatively common.
This time, a military ship’s radio conversation with UK commercial boats reveals the former told the latter to ‘leave Spanish territorial waters’.
The British crew member is recorded as responding that the trade ships were ‘not adrift’, but anchored in the port, and asking the Spanish craft to ‘verify you are referring to our vessel’.
In reply, the Spanish crew repeated its order for the British vessels to leave, but the Gibraltarian port authority instructed them to stay put.
Gibraltar’s government rarely minces its words when disputes of this nature arise, and Sunday was no exception.
It called the Spanish crew’s actions ‘foolish games’ with ‘only nuisance value’, and were the work of ‘those who don’t accept unimpeachable British sovereignty’ over the Rock’s waters ‘as recognised by the whole world in the United Nations Convention on the law of the sea’.
The British Royal Navy base in Gibraltar sent out two crafts to the scene, and the force reported that the Spanish warship, after being ‘challenged’ by the UK military crew, ‘sailed slowly along the…coast with its weapons uncovered and unmanned’.
Gibraltar’s government has announced it will be taking further action.
You may also be interested in ...
More Politics & People content
BREXIT uncertainty has created an additional problem for Spaniards living in the UK – the only two Consulates in the country are overwhelmed with work and appointments are nearly impossible to obtain. Registering as a...
PABLO Iglesias’ wife and Podemos’ Parliamentary spokeswoman Irene Montero is pregnant again – nine months after giving birth to twin boys who were . Irene and Pablo kept a bedside vigil all summer after Leo and...
SPANIARDS are the most pro-European and least nationalist of all EU citizens according to the latest Eurobarometer study. Nearly nine in 10 agree with European migration policies and over eight in 10 believe ‘fake...