Government Minister Sir Joe Bossano last night slammed the “disgraceful” position taken by the European Union over its Brexit negotiating guidelines which, he said, is enough to convert him into a Brexiteer.
Speaking to GBC’s current affairs TV programme ‘Viewpoint’, Sir Joe said it was “disgraceful” that the European Council’s guidelines for Brexit negotiations appeared to offer Spain a veto on the Rock’s future.
“It’s enough to convert me from a supporter of the European Union into a Brexiteer,” he said.
Sir Joe flagged how Gibraltar, despite opting to remain in the EU by 96%, will leave along with the rest of Britain “because 51% of the people in the UK want out”.
And yet, he said, the EU’s guidelines give certain advantages to the 51% who want to leave and not to the 96% who backed continued EU membership.
“That is a disgraceful partisan position to take where whatever you thought of the EU and its moral code before, you can’t think the same after,” he added.
“This is a complete betrayal of the trust that the people of Gibraltar have had in the EU.”
“And, frankly, I don’t think I want to be in that club anymore if they behave like that because I have no confidence that we will ever get a fair treatment under the EU,” Sir Joe said.
Sir Joe, who recently returned from a week in Westminster, also reflected on the current state of affairs in the UK in respect of Brexit.
“Basically, what comes across is that what you see from the outside is what’s really happening on the inside, which is that nobody has a clue what’s going on and nobody knows how this is going to finish,” he said.
He was also cautious about the commitments given by the UK to Gibraltar, which he said were limited by the UK’s “ability to deliver” what it was promising.