MEP calls for more resource for Royal Navy to protect disputed waters of Gibraltar - La Treizième Étoile: A blog on EU politics
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MEP calls for more resource for Royal Navy to protect disputed waters of Gibraltar

Sunday, 10 March 2013
Giles Chichester MEP (Photo: gileschichestermep.org.uk)South West Conservative MEP Giles Chichester has called for more resources to be made available so that the Royal Navy can protect the disputed waters of Gibraltar.

Mr Chichester, a participant of the 2011 Armed Forces Parliamentary Scheme and the son of Sir Francis Chichester, the first person to sail single-handed around the world, made the comments during his latest visit to Gibraltar on the invitation of Chief Minister Fabian Picardo.

I have intervened on a number of occasions to urge foreign office in particular David Lidington to maintain a robust line with our Spanish colleagues, because I think it is very important that we from the mainland, from London and foreign office do all that we can to protect Gibraltar’s territorial waters,” he is quoted as saying in the Gibraltar Chronicle.

Their account continues: (my emphasis)

We are up against a difficult situation in Spain, to be fair the Spanish have got big problems on their hands” and according to Mr Chichester the Spanish are using Gibraltar “as a means of distracting people from domestic issues.” When asked if he had a solution that he thought could work, he smiled and said: “Excuse me from smiling; it’s not that I don’t take it seriously, but no I don’t have a solution. I think however we need to make sure that the Navy has the right resource here to be willing to defend the waters and I think maybe this is something I should take up when I get back to England.” When posed with the question ‘did he think enough was being done at the moment by the Navy?’ he said: “I think they are doing a good job, but I think maybe we should think of trying to give them a slightly bigger stick.

More details about Mr Chichester’s visit and who he met can be found at the Gibraltar Chronicle.

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