Spanish naval vessel in territorial waters

Flickr by Contando Estrelas

MONDAY morning saw another encroachment on British Gibraltar territorial waters (BGTW) as the Spanish Naval ship SNS Infanta Cristina was seen within local waters.

Although the Spanish Navy claimed that there had been no incursion, its claims are unfounded and incorrect, according to authorities in Gibraltar, and amount to a breach of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).

In a statement, a government spokesperson said that there was no excuse whatsoever for the Spanish Navy to enter into British Gibraltar territorial waters, which was a violation of the UNCLOS convention and can only worsen the situation.

The Rock has said that the UK will be unable to ignore the repeated violations of its sovereignty in the area, and that it is only right to raise formal diplomatic protest each and every time that this happens.

The Gibraltarian government added that it hoped that Spanish government would be dissuaded from following this course in the future.

This ‘illegal incursion’ as described by the British authorities, is the third in as many days. Over the weekend Guardia Civil vessels crossed into BGTW on two separate occasions. 

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