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Spanish Navy mucking about in Gibraltar

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Spanish Navy mucking about in Gibraltar

Old 18th Feb 2019, 19:54
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Spanish Navy mucking about in Gibraltar

Not aviation as such, yet, but regardless:

https://www.gbc.gi/news/spanish-navy...isdiction-bgtw

Spanish Navy Ship exercises jurisdiction in BGTW with guns manned, says Gibraltar Government - UK says "innocent passage"


A Spanish Navy warship motored through British Gibraltar Territorial Waters on Sunday afternoon with its guns uncovered and asked at least two commercial ships to leave their anchorage off the eastern side of the Rock.The Gibraltar Government said there are still some in the Spanish navy "who think they can flout international law".But the UK government played down the incident, saying no illegal incursion took place.

What happened in Gibraltar waters on Sunday afternoon?

  1. Spanish navy warship Tornado motored through Gibraltar waters. GBC’s cameras managed to capture it, and her path was shown on vessel tracker apps.
  2. Secondly, the warship asked commercial ships to leave their anchorage off the eastern side of the Rock, claiming they were in Spanish waters. We know this from a VHF recording obtained by the Gibraltar Chronicle. The Gibraltar Port Authority told the commercial vessels they were in Gibraltar waters and were asked to stay put, which they did.
  3. The warship Tornado P44 was photographed with its guns uncovered and manned. It sailed slowly through Gibraltar waters.
  4. The Royal Navy responded: HMS Scimitar and a RHIB went out to shadow the Spanish ship. The Spanish warship left after being challenged by the Royal Navy.
  5. It’s the second visit this month by Tornado.
Those are the facts. But there are differing accounts of what they mean.

Comments by the Gibraltar, UK and Spanish Governments

The Gibraltar Government claimed the warship had taken executive action in Gibraltar waters when it ordered commercial ships to leave. A spokesman said there is only nuisance value to the foolish games being played by those who don't accept British sovereignty over the waters around Gibraltar as recognised by the whole world in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Seas."A spokesperson for UK Prime Minister Theresa May said there had not been an incursion. He said the UK is certain of its sovereignty over the whole of Gibraltar, including British-Gibraltar Territorial waters, and any incursions are a violation of sovereignty, but not a threat to it. This was echoed locally by the Convent. Defence Minister Gavin Williamson also told the UK Parliament that: “we will always be there to defend our sovereign interests and defend Britain’s national interests”.Responding to yesterday's incident, Spain's Foreign Ministry claimed the waters around the Rock are Spain's, that she projects her sovereignty in them "in keeping with international law" & that the warship was carrying out its normal duties.

Innocent passage?

The story has been covered by the Spanish press and the UK media. Many observers are bemused as to how the UK could claim there was no incursion when there is video footage and vessel tracker apps showing the vessel in waters close to the Rock.This is partly answered by considering: what is innocent passage? A vessel can only be considered to be on innocent passage through British waters if it's moving continuously and expeditiously, and is not engaged in any activities that are prejudicial to Gibraltar or the UK. That's the basis of expert legal advice received by the Government on the question of innocent passage as it relates to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea.So, maybe the attempt by the Spanish navy to interfere with lawful shipping activity happened when Tornado was outside Gibraltar waters? Curiously, none of the UK statements mention the audio recording or the attempted interference.

Gibraltar Government effectively rejects UK reading of "innocent passage"

And, there’s more. The Gibraltar Government issued a second statement this evening quoting from their legal advice. It effectively rejects the UK government’s reading of yesterday’s incident; according to Fabian Picardo’s Government, it was an illegal incursion. It says Madrid itself has confirmed the motive behind the incursion was to pursue Spain’s sovereignty claim over Gibraltar’s waters, meaning it indisputably breaches the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. It says instructing merchant vessels to move was “prejudicial to the peace, good order and security of the coastal State”.The Gibraltar Government says it is nonsensical that Spain should deploy one of its warships to play war games in British waters at a time when there are serious threats in this area which are well known.

Picardo: We will not be bullied

According to Mr Picardo, Spain is either unable to control its military or is prepared to use its military to advance a political claim. It says actions such as this create confusion and unnecessary risk to the lives of mariners.The Chief Minister said the people of Gibraltar won't be bullied now or after the 29th of March, after Brexit.
Photo by DM Parody (dotcom.gi/photos) showing the Spanish warship Tornado with its guns unsheathed & manned in Gibraltar waters on SundayPhoto by DM Parody (dotcom.gi/photos) showing the Spanish warship Tornado with its guns unsheathed & manned in Gibraltar waters on Sunday
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Old 18th Feb 2019, 22:07
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Maybe a few photographs of the ships keel sent to the Spanish defence ministry or better, the ships Captain would be in order.
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Old 19th Feb 2019, 01:03
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Send the SAS to board and capture the ships officers while their having their siesta!!!!
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Old 19th Feb 2019, 07:54
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Don't worry Gavin W. will be e along on Monday to sort it out inhis usual careful manner....
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Old 19th Feb 2019, 09:21
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Yes, you would hope that Gavin might realise that a deployment of Queen Elizabeth here might be more impactful ( and cheaper!) that a trip to try put the frighteners on the Chinese!
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Old 20th Feb 2019, 00:34
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Seen off by the fearsome looking HMS Scimitar.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Scimitar_(P284)
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Old 20th Feb 2019, 06:00
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Originally Posted by oldpax View Post
Send the SAS to board and capture the ships officers while their having their siesta!!!!
Why SAS, why not 'the section'?
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Old 20th Feb 2019, 10:31
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Maybe they should complain to the EU.... oohhhhh ........
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Old 20th Feb 2019, 11:18
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Which reminds me. Does an aircraft taking-off east to west still have to do a sharp left shortly after lift-off from Gibraltar?
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Old 20th Feb 2019, 11:39
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Yes, you would hope that Gavin might realise that a deployment of Queen Elizabeth here might be more impactful ( and cheaper!) that a trip to try put the frighteners on the Chinese
With an airfield on the Rock, can't see what value the QEC would add.
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Old 20th Feb 2019, 14:48
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Not much PR value in a picture of Gavin "defending" the airport..

Sending a T45 or better still an SSN port call might be more useful...................
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Old 20th Feb 2019, 18:08
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Originally Posted by Asturias56 View Post
Not much PR value in a picture of Gavin "defending" the airport..

Sending a T45 or better still an SSN port call might be more useful...................
Or a couple of Apaches operating out the airport
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Old 21st Feb 2019, 08:49
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Gavin has signed a deal to use a new port in Oman for the QE according to today's Times news feed........................
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Old 21st Feb 2019, 09:49
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Originally Posted by RedhillPhil View Post
Which reminds me. Does an aircraft taking-off east to west still have to do a sharp left shortly after lift-off from Gibraltar?
Can't find a departures plate but the missed approach procedure for 27 requires a left turn out.
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Old 21st Feb 2019, 10:01
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Seeing the Spanish Government have just called an election, pretty obvious that they will start causing "headlines".
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Old 21st Feb 2019, 12:23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asturias56
Not much PR value in a picture of Gavin "defending" the airport..

Sending a T45 or better still an SSN port call might be more useful...................
Or a couple of Apaches operating out the airport
I think some Jaguars were sent to Gibraltar during the Falklands for just this very reason, no?

Nothing of that kind will happen now, because the UK daren't rock the boat for fear Spain will scupper any future trade deal with the EU. Same reason Williamson got his knuckled rapped for saying he's going to sail the QEC to China. It's called 'taking back control', I think.
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Old 21st Feb 2019, 13:24
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Originally Posted by melmothtw View Post
I think some Jaguars were sent to Gibraltar during the Falklands for just this very reason, no?

Nothing of that kind will happen now, because the UK daren't rock the boat for fear Spain will scupper any future trade deal with the EU. Same reason Williamson got his knuckled rapped for saying he's going to sail the QEC to China. It's called 'taking back control', I think.
We were there or not there post Falklands with Jaguars from RAFG to "deter the locals across the other side of the runway by flying the flag and showing a presence, all be it supposedly surreptitiously, we also used to do simulated exocet type attacks on RN ships heading south to get them up to speed. Indeed they opened the border during the period I was there and we had a little flypast, which caused a few ruffles elsewhere

cough cough...

http://www.14sqn-association.org.uk/...Jaguar.html#10
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Old 21st Feb 2019, 13:45
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I visited Gib several times on holiday between 1981 and 1988; the first time a couple of hunters were parked on South Apron and at other times I saw Jaguars parked there.
When I was there in '86, there was an exercise with 8 Buccaneers operating from there.
One day a Nimrod turned up when I was at Princess Caroline's Battery; (overlooking the airfield) there was a huge bang (I thought for a moment the Spanish were shooting at him) as he crossed the road and another a few seconds later; he must have been a bit enthusiatic with wheel braking!(Don't know why; was there a reason for not using reverse thrust at Gib?)
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Old 21st Feb 2019, 14:42
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I was there 85 and there was a huge black skidmark down the main runway from a Nimrod blow out, we were also playing with Hunters and possibly a Canberra, the ex matlots with them were handy as they could signal the line office with semaphore to get stuff we needed sent out to us

Re the Nimrod, he really needed a hook to use the chag
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Old 21st Feb 2019, 15:55
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Ahh Gibraltar and the Spanish - pot, kettle black I believe the phrase is???

And Madrid bangs on about cigarette smuggling but never does anything about the people who buy them in ..........

Politicians!
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