Ex-Tory leader Michael Howard just likened Gibraltar to the Falklands after EU Brexit negotiations documents reveal Spain veto

Lynsey Barber
Follow Lynsey
Spain Considers Gibraltar Border Fee
Gibraltar is a British Overseas Territory (Source: Getty)

"There's no question our government will stand by Gibraltar," a former Tory leader has said, likening the row over its sovereignty in light of Brexit to the Falklands.

Speaking on Sky News, Lord Michael Howard said: "35 years ago this week, another woman Prime Minister, sent a task force half way across the world, to defend the freedom of another small group of British people, against another Spanish speaking country."

Leaked draft documents on the EU's negotiating position suggest Spain would be given the final say on a deal involving Gibraltar. Foreign secretary Boris Johnson has promised "rock-like" support for the British territory,

Meanwhile, defence secretary vowed to "look after" Gibraltar, telling the BBC's Andrew Marr Show it would be "protected all the way".

"Sovereignty of Gibraltar cannot be changed without the agreement of the people of Gibraltar. They've made it very clear they do not want to live under Spanish rule, and I think it's interesting in the draft guidelines from the EU that Spain is not saying that the whole thing is subject to the transfer of sovereignty."

And chief minister of Gibraltar Fabian Picardo said that it was "only fair and right" that a deal between the UK and EU would also apply to Gibraltar.

A Downing Street spokesperson added: "The Prime Minister said we will never enter into arrangements under which the people of Gibraltar would pass under the sovereignty of another state against their freely and democratically expressed wishes, nor will we ever enter into a process of sovereignty negotiations with which Gibraltar is not content.

"The Prime Minister said we remain absolutely dedicated to working with Gibraltar for the best possible outcome on Brexit, and will continue to involve them fully in the process."

A call took place this morning between Theresa May and Picardo.

Related articles