The British Government has reaffirmed its “steadfast” support for Gibraltar its people and its economy as it insisted that the Rock’s priorities will be taken into account as it pursues key future agreements.
During a recent meeting of the House of Lords, a number of questions relating to Gibraltar were tabled and answered by Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State on behalf of the British Government.
Baroness Harris of Richmond Deputy Speaker of the House of Lords, asked if the Government will ensure that Spain is not allowed to extract concessions on Gibraltar when pursuing future defence, security and intelligence agreements.
In answer Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State, said: “The British Government is absolutely steadfast in our support for Gibraltar, its people and its economy.”
“To that end, we have been clear that the priorities of the Government of Gibraltar will be properly taken into account in all future discussions, including those on security matters.”
Additionally, Labour Peer Lord Hoyle tabled a number of questions relating to unlawful incursions into Gibraltar territorial waters by Spanish patrol vessels.
He further asked what assurances they have received from the government of Spain that incursions by Spanish patrol vessels into Gibraltar’s territorial water will cease.
Lord Ahmad said the British Government makes formal diplomatic protests to the Spanish authorities following every incursion.
“Our Ambassador in Madrid raised with the Spanish Government on 18 February 2019 our concerns about provocative actions and incursions by Spanish state vessels in British Gibraltar Territorial Waters (BGTW).”
“Incursions are a violation of sovereignty, not a threat to it. They do not weaken or undermine the legal basis in international law for British sovereignty over Gibraltar, including British Gibraltar Territorial Waters,” he added.