Brexit: Picardo says Gibraltar will ‘thrive’ regardless
Spanish Foreign Minister Arancha Gonzalez Laya said as part of the agreement, the British Overseas Territory will remain part of European Union agreements such as the Shengen area.
She added all details of the agreement between London and Madrid will be finalised during a six-month transition regarding the territory
Madrid and London have been locked in talks over how to police the land border between Spain and Gibraltar.
This had been excluded from the post-Brexit trade deal agreed between the UK and European Union last week.
There had been fears a deal would not have been concluded before the Brexit transition period between the UK and EU expires at 11pm on Thursday.
Boris Johnson hailed the agreement between the UK and Spain over the status of Gibraltar after Brexit.
He insisted the Britain has “always been, and will remain, totally committed to the protection of the interests of Gibraltar and its British sovereignty”.
Brexit news: Spain has struck an initial deal with the UK over the status of Gibraltar
The Prime Minister wrote on Twitter: I wholeheartedly welcome today’s political agreement between the UK and Spain on Gibraltar’s future relationship with the EU.
“The UK has always been, and will remain, totally committed to the protection of the interests of Gibraltar and its British sovereignty.”
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said: “Today, working side by side with the Chief Minister of Gibraltar, and following intensive discussions with the Spanish government, we reached agreement on a political framework to form the basis of a separate treaty between the UK and the EU regarding Gibraltar.
“We will now send this to the European Commission, in order to initiate negotiations on the formal treaty.
“In the meantime, all sides are committed to mitigating the effects of the end of the transition period on Gibraltar, and in particular ensure border fluidity, which is clearly in the best interests of the people living on both sides.
“We remain steadfast in our support for Gibraltar and its sovereignty. I am grateful to (Spanish) Foreign Minister Laya and her team for their positive and constructive approach.
“We have a warm and strong relationship with Spain, and we look forward to building on it in 2021.”
Gibraltar Chief Minister Fabian Picardo hailed the agreement betweenthe UK and Spain, which will see the British territory “avert the worst effects of a hard Brexit”.
He said: “This New Year’s Eve, we can look forward with expectation & hope.
“We believe we may now be able to reset our relationship with #Spain & cast it in a more positive light going forward.
“After many months of hard work, we have reached an in principle agreement with the UK and Spain.
“The treaty to be negotiated will deal with maximised and unrestricted mobility of persons between #Gibraltar and the #Schengen area.
“Almost at the last minute, the negotiation is successfully completed and the clock has stopped ticking.
“We are going to avert the worst effects of a hard Brexit.”
Mr Picardo admitted the talks have been a “difficult process” and that Gibraltar had been “battling the tide of history”.
But he said “we are at the beginning of the creation of an area of shared prosperity”.
The Chief Minister continued: “There are no aspects of the framework that has been agreed that in any away transgress #Gibraltar position on sovereignty, jurisdiction or control.
“And that is not just my opinion, it is also the opinion of all members of the Gibraltar Cabinet.
“This has been a difficult process. We have been battling the tide of history.
“But with this #agreement in principle we hope to start to see the #future come into view.
“We are at the beginning of the creation of an area of #sharedprosperity.”
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