Spain has announced it will guarantee British residents’ rights in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
The Spanish government said it would allow British residents to stay if the UK leaves the EU without a deal, giving them until the end of 2020 to apply for permanent residency and making it automatic for many.
With less than a month until Britain is due to leave the EU, Theresa May has yet to convince Parliament to back the Brexit deal she negotiated. That leaves open the possibility of an abrupt exit with no agreement.
Spain has one of the largest British expatriate communities in the EU and has been at pains to reassure them that their rights will be protected after Brexit.
Source: Brexit news latest: Spain to guarantee British residents’ rights in event of no-deal | London Evening Standard
A Spanish warship with its guns manned ordered commercial ships to leave British Gibraltar waters on Sunday, the territory’s government said.
The warship’s crew can be heard in an audio recording of a radio exchange telling vessels anchored at the Rock to “leave Spanish territorial waters”. Royal Navy boats were deployed in response to the incident.
The vessels that were ordered to leave remained in port during the incident, which was branded “foolish” by a spokesman for Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar.
“There is only nuisance value to these foolish games being played by those who don’t accept unimpeachable British sovereignty over the waters around Gibraltar, as recognised by the whole world in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea,” the spokesman said.
“It seems there are still some in the Spanish navy who think they can flout international law.
Source: Spanish warship orders Gibraltar boats to leave British waters : The Telegraph
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Britain could get visa-free access to the European Union for its citizens even after no-deal Brexit but objected on Friday to language used in the proposed EU regulation which described Gibraltar as a “colony”.
The row highlighted strains over the territory on Spain’s southern coast as Britain quits the Union and the remainder of the EU states swing the bloc’s policies behind Spain, which is taking advantage of Brexit to ramp up its claim to “The Rock”.
The new regulation would let British citizens can visit the EU without a visa for up to 90 days even if there is no special withdrawal deal.
It made a new distinction between those living in Britain and those who are citizens of Gibraltar, a British Overseas Territory which is now in the EU.
Diplomats said the British ambassador to the EU raised London’s objections to this in a meeting of EU envoys. A British spokeswoman said: “Gibraltar is not a colony and it is completely inappropriate to describe in this way.”
Source: EU irks Britain by calling Gibraltar ‘colony’ | Reuters
A comment from 61chrissterry ‘The betrayal of Gibraltar by the UK, but what is just one more on top of many others.
BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union removed the last major obstacle to sealing an agreement on Brexit after Spain said it had reached a deal Saturday with Britain over Gibraltar on the eve of an EU summit.
British Prime Minister Theresa May, who arrived in Brussels Saturday evening for preparatory talks with EU leaders, will then have the momentous task of selling the deal to a recalcitrant British Parliament and a nation still fundamentally split over whether the U.K. should leave the EU on March 29 and under what conditions.
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced Saturday that Madrid would support the Brexit divorce deal after the U.K. and the EU agreed to give Spain a say in the future of the disputed British territory of Gibraltar, which lies at the southern tip of the Mediterranean nation.
Spain wants the future of the tiny territory, which was ceded to Britain in 1713 but is still claimed by Spain, to be a bilateral issue between Madrid and London, not between Britain and the EU.
In a letter obtained by The Associated Press, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and European Council President Donald Tusk assured Sanchez that Spain’s “prior agreement” would be needed on matters concerning Gibraltar.
“Europe and the United Kingdom have ac
Source: Spain to back Brexit deal after UK agrees to Gibraltar terms : MSN News
Spain has called on the UK government to make a commitment on Gibraltar in writing before EU leaders meet to finalise the Brexit deal on Sunday.
Speaking Friday, Spanish Secretary of State for the European Union, Luis Marco Aguiriano, said Madrid may vote against the divorce deal unless clarification concerning the future status of Gibraltar is included in the text.
European Union negotiators from the 27 states remaining after Brexit were unable to agree on Gibraltar during talks on Friday, Reuters reported, citing diplomatic sources.
Spain reportedly objected to portions of the text at the last minute, meaning little time was left for an agreement to be made.
A Spanish government spokesperson said any decisions concerning the future status of Gibraltar in the draft withdrawal treaty must be approved by Spain.
Source: Spain ‘to reject Brexit deal’ without written Gibraltar pledge from UK | Euronews
Brussels has insisted that specific divorce terms for the British Overseas Territory must be first signed off by Spain – effectively giving Spain the power to block the UK’s entire exit deal.
Madrid has long complained about the Rock’s status as a British territory and attacked it over its tax rules and environmental issues as well as claiming tobacco smugglers use the territory to move cigarettes into Spain.
The Spanish government has used its veto as an opportunity to push for more control over Gibraltar – particularly its airport – and as a way to force concessions on some of its demands.
But while the issue of sovereignty is now off the table, Gibraltar has revealed some of these issues will be addressed in “separate arrangements with Spain” as the Brexit negotiations enter their final stage.
A statement issued by the Gibraltar Government today said: “An agreement which provides for Gibraltar’s orderly withdrawal from the European Union is almost complete.
“There are a few issues that remain to be ironed out and the overarching principle of the discussions remains that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed.”
Source: Brexit news: Gibraltar border row with Spain SOLVED – now onto Ireland | Politics | News | Express.co.uk
Scottish politicians and campaigners are celebrating after the Spanish government was forced to withdraw arrest warrants for several Catalan politicians. These included the warrant seeking the extradition of Clara Ponsati, who was set to appear in court in Edinburgh on 23 July.
The Spanish judiciary made the decision after German courts ruled against extraditing former Catalan president Carlos Puigdemont on charges of rebellion.
European Arrest Warrants
The Catalan independence referendum took place on 1 October 2017. Spain declared the vote illegal, and the scenes of police violence that followed caused outrage across the world.
Spain has since continued to crack down on key figures within the movement. It also issued European arrest warrants for those who fled Catalonia after the vote. The charges listed included rebellion and misuse of public funds.
Ponsati left Catalonia after the vote to St Andrews in Fife, Scotland. Ponsati had previously worked as a lecturer at the town’s university and returned to her role in 2018.
Scottish human rights lawyer Aamer Anwar, who represents Ponsati, said they were still awaiting officialconfirmation from Spain that the warrants had been dropped.
Source: Scottish politicians are celebrating after a European government is ‘humiliated’ into action | The Canary
Pro-independence parties have restarted talks on the formation of an effective government in Catalonia. The negotiations broke down two weeks ago, following a wave of mutual reproaches and criticism. However, the announcement of the Spanish government that it will use its direct rule over Catalonia to eliminate Catalan as a vernacular language at schools has forced ERC and JxCat to understand each other and accelerate their negotiations.
A number of possible formulas to swear in Puigdemont as president are under discussion. The possibility of forming a dual government with some members in Brussels and others in Barcelona appears to be the most feasible one. In an interview with ACN (Catalan News Agency), Elsa Artadi (JxCat) said that her party and the ERC are preparing the necessary logistics to make it possible to govern from both places.
She also said that Puigdemont has to be sworn in even though the Spanish Constitutional Court and the Spanish government are determined to prevent it from happening. She explains that Puigdemont cannot be just a symbolic figure. For her candidacy, she has to “govern, be part of the executive power and have completelegitimacy.” Artadi added that Puigdemont should be the leader of the country, the one “setting the tone” of Catalonia’s politics.
Source: Dual Government in Catalonia? : Josep Goded