La Treizième Étoile: 30/06/13 - 07/07/13 Blog Archives
News from the European Union with a focus on the South West UK and Gibraltar region and its MEPs
My tweets (@SWUKinEU)
Gibraltar MEP raises Guardia Civil shooting incident at the European Parliament

Tuesday, 2 July 2013
South West UK and Gibraltar MEP Sir Graham Watson has raised at the European Parliament the serious incident last week in Gibraltar in which a citizen was shot at by a patrol boat of the Spanish Guardia Civil without warning.

During a one-minute speech last night (Monday) at the Parliament’s monthly plenary session in Strasbourg, Sir Graham said: “Mr President, I would like to draw the attention of the House to an incident on the evening of 23 June off West Beach in the Bay of Gibraltar. My constituent, Mr Dale Villa, was riding a new jet ski with family and friends when, without warning, a patrol boat of the Spanish Guardia Civil fired a shot at him, then chased him and fired three more shots, even though he was within waters the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea has determined as belonging to Gibraltar.

It is lucky that Mr Villa was not killed or seriously injured.

Gibraltar has been a member of the European Union for 40 years. Unlike any other territory it is fully compliant with EU rules. It is totally unacceptable that my constituent should have been attacked by police from Spain in this way when no offence has been committed and when he was not within their waters. This is one of many such incursions by the Guardia Civil in the past three years. I would ask President Schulz to take up this matter with the authorities of Spain, to protect my constituents.


South West coastal town Poole to host European Maritime Day Conference in 2017

Monday, 1 July 2013
The large coastal town and seaport of Poole, Dorset has been successful in its bid to host the two-day European Maritime Day conference in 2017.

The event, held annually on 20 May, will feature a host of maritime experts from all over Europe with topics addressed including renewable energy, sustainable fishing and coastal erosion. It is jointly funded by businesses and the EU. This year's event took place in Valletta, Malta and Bremen in Germany will host the 2014 edition.

South West Conservative MEP Julie Girling was delighted at the news. She said: "This is an opportunity to really put Poole on the map in Europe and showcase what a great place it is."

European Maritime Day was created by the Presidents of the European Commission, the European Parliament and the Council of the EU on 20 May 2008.


Mobile roaming charges slashed again by the EU, just in time for the summer hols…

Life's a beach... (Photo: Breff/ South West MEP Sir Graham Watson has welcomed the entry into force of new EU caps on mobile phone roaming fees on 1 July which will further reduce the cost of data roaming by over a third and further reduce the cost of making calls and sending messages when visiting another EU country.

From 1 July, the cost of using the internet abroad will reduce by 36%, down to an average of 40p per Megabyte (MB), with the cost of sending a text reduced by 11% to an average of 7p.

Liberal Democrat MEP Sir Graham said: "These new rates have come in just in time for families heading off on their summer holidays and will help to take the sting out of those shock mobile phone bills. Thanks to the new cap on data usage, checking your emails, social networks or GPS maps while abroad in another EU country will no longer incur sky-high charges.

"But there is still some way to go. Liberal Democrats in the European Parliament are leading the fight to end roaming charges in Europe once and for all, and we will be meeting with EU Digital Agenda Commissioner Neelie Kroes this week to see how we can take this forward. Moreover, some service providers have increased roaming fees in non EU countries, so beware!"

Click here for more details on the new capped EU's mobile roaming fees.


Last election:

Click here to see which six MEPs were elected.