UK exit from European Union would ‘be a disaster for Gibraltar’, its chief minister warned while complaining that Britain had not done enough to deter Spain from ‘bullying’ its tiny neighbour
Gibraltar would face “disastrous” consequences if Britain were to leave the European Union, its chief minister has said, warning that an exit would leave the Rock struggling to survive economically.
Fabian Picardo, the chief minister since 2011, also demanded that Britain do more to protect its tiny Overseas Territory complaining that Spain continued to use “bullying” tactics despite “very robust” diplomatic pressure on Madrid.
The chief minister told delegates from the Foreign Affairs Committee of the House of Commons that Spanish authorities continued to apply pressure at the border causing lengthy delays to those crossing and had stepped up incursions by Spanish state vessels into Gibraltar’s territorial waters.
“What the United Kingdom has said [over recent months] has been very robust, it’s been more robust perhaps than it has been for 30 years,” Mr Picardo admitted in the one-off session held in Gibraltar on Wednesday.
“But if we look at the results of what has been said and what has been done, then the results are not so good,” he said. “The results tell us that not enough has happened to deter Spain’s activity.”