Saturday, September 03, 2005

Government rounds on Airport ‘speculation'

• Leon urges prudence

No 6 Convent Place yesterday issued a terse retort, evidently aimed at remarks made by Joe Bossano, Opposition Leader, in which they said unnecessary concern is being generated.

“The Gibraltar Government would not conclude or accept any airport agreement that dilutes or prejudices exclusive British sovereignty of any part of Gibraltar,” said yesterday’s statement.

It went on to say that in any case “these discussions are not, for any of the sides, about sovereignty. They are about trying to find a formula that will allow expanded use of Gibraltar Airport, for the benefit of people on both sides of the frontier, without prejudicing any of the parties’ position in relation to sovereignty.”

The statement was being made “given the recent speculative and misleading remarks and analysis by others, which may be causing unnecessary concern to some people in Gibraltar.”

It said it was now simply repeating its often stated position in relation to the current discussions relating to a possible airport agreement.

Meanwhile, commenting to the press in Jaen yesterday Bernardino Leon, Madrid’s secretary of state for foreign affairs, said that there must be prudence in this current process of talks.

He told reporters that satisfactory progress is being made but that the issues are “delicate and complex”. He said that it was still not certain that the target date set for a meeting will be kept to but he did think that agreements will be reached.

It also emerged that the Junta de Andalucia has been represented at talks in London relating to pension claims by former Spanish workers.

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