Sunday, April 2, 2017

Brexit strengthens Spain's position on Gibraltar

Gibraltar has been a thorn in the side of relations between Spain and the United Kingdom ever since the land became British in the 1700's. But after the Brexit vote, the U.K.'s position in Gibraltar has been loosened. The overwhelming majority of the 30,000 Britons living in Gibraltar voted to remain in the E.U., as they felt a leave vote would strengthen Spanish claims on Gibraltar. Not only is Gibraltar completely surround by Spain, by land at least, there are 12,000 Spanish workers who migrate to work in Gibraltar could allow Spain to exert tough economic sanctions on Gibraltar as a bargaining chip for their weak claims on it, since the overwhelming majority of the Britons there wish to remain British, according to a 2002 referendum. To make matters worse, Theresa May will have to negotiate both alongside the Kingdom of Spain and the E.U. over the matter. Theresa May should no signs of relinquishing ties to Gibraltar, with Michael Howard, a former leader of the Conservative Party, drew comparisons between Theresa May with Gibraltar and Margaret Thatcher with the Falkland islands.

-Bobby Gannon

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