11th September 2015
The sovereignty of Gibraltar will not be discussed by the EU’s Council of Minister after Gibraltar MEP Ashley Fox and his colleagues persuaded fellow parliamentarians to delete a needless reference to Gibraltar in a report on EU transport policy.
A section of the report called for the EU’s Council of Ministers to "resolve the UK-Spain dispute over Gibraltar, which is currently impeding numerous legislative files". However MEPs have now voted to delete this statement.
Conservative MEPs do not believe the sovereignty of Gibraltar is a matter for discussion at Council level, and indeed the blockage has been caused solely by the current Spanish Government's repudiation of the 2006 Cordoba Agreement.
Under the terms of the agreement, Gibraltar is fully recognised as a part of the EU's single market and therefore should be fully included in EU aviation legislation.
Aside from the issue of Gibraltar, the report contained a number of other demands that we could not support, including EU-wide rules on road tolls and the creation of an unnecessary European Road Transport Agency.
Gibraltar MEP Ashley Fox said; “This was a back door way of debating something that is not up for discussion. The position under the EU Treaties is clear: Gibraltar is included in aviation measures. EU citizens using Gibraltar Airport should not be denied EU rights because Spain chooses to pursue a sovereignty dispute.”
"Gibraltarians are as much members of the EU as a resident of Bristol or Madrid. It is unacceptable for Spain to attempt to force the UK to enter into sovereignty negotiations. After the usual summer of nonsense with incursions and border delays the Spanish government has started the new parliamentary session by being its usual awkward self.”