No construction materials imported into Gib. Guardia Civil diving in Brit/Gib waters. Gib government trying to reach agreement on letting Spaniards fish in Gib waters. What’s going on now?
Lazy Wed Ann Day/Weekend. Except the intrepid Gib News Sleuth-Hound has yet more to report.
Sand trucks are not being allowed into Gib. This is allegedly because Gib is buying sand from a firm that has been stripping Tarifa dunes illegally. Hey, Gib is buying from Spain, funding their crap economy.
That’s an official news story courtesy of GBC. The construction site news is that neither bricks nor gravel/stone chippings to make concrete (hormigón) are being allowed in either.
This is about the East Side development which Spain doesn’t like. And all the other construction work in Gib. This keeps Spaniards employed. How many on Partner’s site are Spanish? The majority. They live in Spain and cross the frontier every day. If the firm can’t get materials they will have to lay these people off. How stupid is that?
Meanwhile, Gemma Araujo (mayor of La Linea) has told Madrid she wants compensation for loss of income for La Linea because Gibbos are no longer spending their money there. Well, they wouldn’t would they? Sit in queues for 3-6 hours and/or get your car fire-bombed.
What else is in the news? It’s all happening here in Gib.
Oh yes, the Guardia Civil decided to have a dive around the concrete blocks. This represents an incursion into our waters.
The Convent has pointed out the reef, which it calls the North/West Artificial Reef System, was created by the Gibraltar Government in compliance with EU Legislation and International Conventions.
The Governor says the act of diving itself constitutes a serious violation of British Sovereignty but that the apparent interference with the Reef is a new and worrying aspect. Sir Adrian Johns says this is a blatant attempt to exercise jurisdiction inside British Gibraltar Territorial Waters and, in the light of the conciliatory position taken by the Gibraltar Government, a particularly unhelpful development at a time when all parties should be seeking to ease the current tensions.
The Convent says the incident was reported immediately to London and Madrid.
For some reason that I haven’t worked out, the Gib Gov is going softly softly on the fishing dispute and seems to think it is a good idea to let the Spaniards fish our waters. What is so special about the waters around Gib? Give an inch and they take three miles, including sending in GC divers.
My Spanish reader added another comment to the earlier post and I thought some of his comments were interesting:
I don´t know who is right or wrong, I mean, the people in Gibraltar demanding independence, territorial waters and anything or the Spanish government demanding a change in the situation. I think that the tax, or toll as you named it, would be totally unfair. But it is my personal view and my knowledge of the Gibraltar matter is poor.
Gibraltarians are not demanding independence. I think we need to be clear about that. Gib is perfectly happy with the current status where it governs itself but is linked to Britain as part of the sovereign realm. The only one who wants change is Spain. (As it has done for the last 309 years just in case anyone has missed that point).
People living there have got some feelings that the Spanish living far away from the Rock may not understand. Believe it or not, some Spaniards would be happy if a good relationship with the Gibraltarians goes on. Some people here assume well the fact that you have some rights in there. Consider, nevertheless, that some Spanish might dislike giving up to a part of the physical country in the Península.
I think distance does make a difference. The relationship between Gibraltar, the cross border workers, and the campo de Gibraltar is only something that people locally understand. Some rights? I think we have a lot of rights. This is so NOT the territorial integrity discussion again. Does Spain want Portugal too?
Meanwhile, as my commenters clearly like to be controversial, I’ll post up an exchange I had with a British reader:
However, did Gibraltar tell Spain that it was planning to build the reef? If not it seems rather confrontational, after all, if I was going to do some home improvements that might affect my neighbour then I think I would have the good manners to discuss it with them first! Just a thought!
• That’s a good analogy. Let’s continue it. You allow your neighbours to visit your garden to pick crops and flowers. They’ve already stripped their garden bare, and those of a few other neighbours. (qv Maurice’s quote re fishing in Newfoundland) In fact one member of the family next-door readily admits that they have trashed their own garden so they need to go elsewhere to deplete others.
• Being a nice person, you have agreed for them to take what they want, making sure they respect the integrity of the plants. But they don’t. They just rip them out, leaving you with no successional crops or flowers.
• You decide to build a polytunnel. They aren’t happy with that. They threaten to destroy it. Instead they come and have a peaceful protest in your garden. You ask some neighbours in to monitor the demonstration and it nearly comes to blows.
• Your neighbours tell you your house isn’t legal, neither is your garden. They apply to the local council for your garden, and one of the councillors is a member of their family so the council rules in favour of them getting your garden.
• It doesn’t matter that you and Kim want to stay in your house, and that you have had it for donkey’s years. Your neighbours want it – for free, I might add. They want to kick you out on the streets.
• Their cousins want your other house – shall we call that one the Falklands?
• Shall I go on? You want to put some compost/turf/doesn’t really matter what, down in your garden for a new project as you still maintain the garden is yours. The neighbours blockade your garden and won’t let the delivery truck in because they say you have bought it illegally from some dodgy person up the street (refers to some sand trucks not being allowed into Gib).
• It’s not actually anything to do with the alleged illegality, it’s because your neighbours don’t want you to carry out the new project in your/their garden. (Refers to a development on Gib’s East Side).
• Let’s go back to the garden. Your neighbours won’t let you in and out of your house. Once you get out of the door, they won’t let you back in and you have to stand there for six hours. Same happens when you finally escape and want to return. It’s summer and it’s hot (OK maybe not in the UK). You are in full sun, while they are in the shade under a parasol with bottles of water.
• It doesn’t matter whether you agree to not build a polytunnel, not returf the lawn, let them take all the crops they want, They. Stll. Want. Your. House. They will do whatever they can to make your life miserable.
Oh and Spain has something like 130 artificial reefs kicking around.
With which I shall clear off to enjoy my rather limp Wed Ann weekend/bank hol. Catch you on the flip side. Hopefully not flipping the ankle again.
Sources: GBC and Partner on the construction site