Stay out of our waters! Spain warned after two 'serious' incidents off Gibraltar
Thursday 15 November 2012
Spain was warned by Europe minister David Lidington to halt “provocative incursions” into Gibraltarian waters after its ambassador was summoned to the Foreign Office to face British anger.
The diplomatic measure followed two “serious” incidents on Monday which saw a Spanish naval vessel patrol the area and an attempt by Spanish customs to seize a civilian boat.
Police from Gibraltar had to intervene “to safeguard the welfare of the four occupants”, the Foreign Office said of the latest incident in the long-running sovereignty dispute over The Rock.
Spain has long laid claim to the island, which is a British overseas territory.
Last month ministers made formal complaints to Madrid about “unacceptable” actions by the Spanish authorities at the border with Gibraltar which led to delays of up to six hours.
Mr Lidington launched a fresh verbal assault today after the FCO's most senior official Simon Fraser made clear Britain's concerns to Ambassador Federico Trillo.
“I condemn these provocative incursions and urge the Spanish government to ensure that they are not repeated,” Mr Lidington said.
“The UK has repeatedly made diplomatic protests to Spain over attempts by Spanish state authorities to exercise jurisdiction in British Gibraltar Territorial Waters.
“Yet on 13 November there were two further serious incursions. A large Spanish naval ship conducted a prominent patrol through British Gibraltar Territorial Waters lasting several hours.
“Later on the same day a Spanish customs vessel sought to apprehend a Gibraltarian civilian boat in British Gibraltar Territorial Waters, forcing the Royal Gibraltar Police to intervene in order to safeguard the welfare of the four occupants.”
He warned that such incidents risked damaging “the prospects of developing a harmonious and collaborative relationship between Gibraltar and Spain.
“It is also in all parties' interests to avoid incidents which could put at risk the safety of those operating in British Gibraltar Territorial Waters.
“We remain confident of UK sovereignty over British Gibraltar Territorial Waters and fully committed to protecting the interests of the people of Gibraltar and their wish to remain under British sovereignty.”
- 1 Autistic teenager beaten up by bullies makes them watch 20-minute video about autism
- 2 Greece debt crisis explained: A history of just how the country landed itself in such a mess
- 3 People all over the world are getting semicolon tattoos to draw attention to mental health
- 4 Greek debt crisis: Yanis Varoufakis's funniest (and most memorable) quotes
- 5 The biggest first date turnoff has been revealed
Greece debt crisis explained: A history of just how the country landed itself in such a mess
Swedish minister gives strongest case yet on why EU should stop turning away asylum seekers
Man dies instantly after shooting firework from top of his head
Isis schoolgirl Amira Abase who fled London to join terrorists in Syria mocks victims of Tunisia massacre
Father faces deportation to Thailand after 27 years in Britain for two 'stupid crimes'
More Britons believe that multiculturalism makes the country worse - not better, says poll
Osborne to cap family benefits at £23,000 – announced ahead of his post-election Budget
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Trainee Vehicle Inspectors / Pu...
£18000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£18000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive is required t...
£25000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This innovative online car purc...