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Anglo-Spanish Gibraltar Talks Likely To Continue, Says Spanish PM

by Ulrika Lomas, Tax-News.com, Brussels

03 December 2002


The Gibraltarian media has reported that the Anglo-Spanish talks over ownership of the Rock have continued to take place in an unofficial capacity, despite the almost unanimous result of the jurisdiction's November 7 referendum on sovereignty.

Iberia News this week quoted Spanish Premier, Jose Maria Aznar as revealing that issues relating to Gibraltar were raised when he met with UK Prime Minister, Tony Blair at the recent NATO summit in Prague.

According to Iberia News, Mr Aznar suggested that formal talks can begin again 'within a reasonable space of time'. However, there has as yet been no official indications as to the state of play over the bilateral talks.

Meanwhile, Spanish Foreign Minister, Ana Palacio also reportedly spoke about the Gibraltar situation, suggesting that discussions between the UK and Spain are more about resolving the 300 year dispute between the two countries than they are about the principle of joint sovereignty.

According to the Rock-based news service:

'The remarks by the Spanish Foreign Minister have come as a surprise as they signal a change in attitude over the significance of the talks, with Spain reducing the emphasis on the joint sovereignty issues which have been at the centre of the controversy during the past year as the UK and Spain restarted talks.'


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