Brits on the Rock tell Spain to back off

Published:  11 Sep at 6 PM
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Gibraltar’s National Day was celebrated with British flag-waving and a demonstration which made it clear expat residents don’t want a Spanish takeover post-Brexit.

National Day in Gibraltar celebrates the Rock’s sovereignty referendum in 1967 with its overwhelming vote to stay British. Given the thousands of protestors who gathered in Grand Casements Square, it would seem a strong and possibly slightly impolite message was sent to those in the Spanish government who’ve been attempting to claw back the peninsula from British rule by using Brexit as an excuse.

The National Day celebrations followed a political rally in favour of Britain’s continuing ownership of Gibraltar, with local politicians and the Rock’s Chief Minister Fabian Picardo assuring expats and other residents the UK’s exit from the European Union wouldn’t change, define or defeat Gibraltar. During his speech, the minister said Gibraltarians are hard-working, peaceful people who will ensure Gibraltar is for ever their home, no matter what happens in the rest of Europe, promising he will turn the Brexit challenge into a win for all those resident on the Rock.

A message from Theresa May spoke of the Rock’s long links with Britain, saying Gibraltar and Britain joined the EU together and will leave together, stepping forward into the future with a shared history. She assured the crowd both governments are fully engaged in the Brexit negotiations, adding nothing will be allowed to weaken Gibraltar’s commitment to remaining British for as long as its people wish. The Rock, she said, is a vital part of the UK’s past, its present and in its future. Finally, she assured Gibraltarians and expats nothing would change for them after the UK/EU divorce is finalised.
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