BREXIT Progress: UK Gives Consent to Spain over Gibraltar, Deal Done
Spain’s junior minister for the European Union says British authorities have consented to Spanish demands granting Madrid prior approval on matters relating to Gibraltar.
Luis Marco Aguiriano says “we have a promise, a commitment, from the British government saying they are ready to … guarantee that they will go along with the clarification we have requested.”
Spain has threatened to block a BREXIT agreement unless its demands on Gibraltar are accepted.
Britain says the withdrawal agreement will not be changed but has not ruled out putting something in writing to allay Spain’s fears.
Spanish private news agency Europa Press says Minister Aguiriano told reporters in Brussels Friday he cannot announce yet that Spain is dropping its veto threat because he has not yet seen a written version of the British promise.
He says Spain wants London to make the written promise public. After that, it will have to be endorsed by Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez.
Britain says the withdrawal agreement won’t be changed, but has not ruled out putting something in writing to allay Spain’s fears.
Isabel Celaa said Friday that prior approval on matters involving Gibraltar is “decisive” for Madrid to approve the BREXIT agreement on future UK-EU relations.
Spain has never relinquished its claim to jurisdiction over the British territory of 32,000 people on the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula.
British Prime Minister Theresa May has refused to say whether she will resign if her BREXIT deal with the EU is rejected by Parliament.
The agreement has drawn strong criticism from lawmakers in May’s own Conservative Party as well as from opposition parties, and she faces a struggle to get Parliament to approve it.
Asked on a radio phone-in whether she would quit if the deal failed, Mrs. May said: “This is not about me.”
She said: “I am not thinking about me. I’m thinking about getting a deal through that delivers for this country.”
EU leaders are due to meet Sunday to sign off on the deal.
Mrs. May said that once that happens she plans to tour Britain explaining the benefits of the agreement.
Spain wants the future of the tiny British territory at the tip of the Iberian Peninsula to be a bi-lateral issue between Madrid and London.
Spain does not have a veto on the withdrawal agreement, which does not have to be approved unanimously. But it could hold up a future free-trade deal between Britain and the EU, which would require approval of all 27 EU nations.
The word is that the ‘Deal is Done’
Have a terrific weekend