Spain accused of causing Gibraltar traffic jams amid Brexit tensions

British enclaves deputy president replies Spanish police deliberately making difficulty for motorists on its border with the mainland

Gibraltar on Wednesday accused Spain of making long traffic jam by stiffening border controls and checks, saying it was clearly a response to rising political strains over the British territory.

As Gibraltar emerges as a sore point in Britains exit negotiations with the European Union, deputy chief minister Joseph Garcia complained of traffic tie-ups on Wednesday on its frontier with Spain.

The latest activity of Spain is obviously and clearly a response to the latest political climate, Garcia told broadcaster GBC. It is what theyve always taken care of me but surely it is totally and absolutely unacceptable.

He added: We have been told that the police officers deployed at their own borders, the Polica Nacional, are not the ones that are here commonly. They dont quite understand how they need to conduct the checks at the border.

Police in the territory known as the Rock, which is home to 32,000 people, tweeted: All those driving toward Spain should expect long delays. Gibraltars government earlier positioned on Twitter that vehicles faced two-hour cables to intersect into Spain.

Neither Spains interior ministry nor the national police is a response to AFPs requests to confirm that border measures had been tightened.

About 10,000 people intersect from Spain to Gibraltar to project every day, with the outcrop is dependant on the small country border for busines and tourism.

Spain has use traffic jam as a political weapon against Gibraltar since the day their own borders opened, Garcia told. He noted that there were similar panoramas at the frontier in 2013 when, in the midst of a diplomatic row, Madrid doubled its border controls until the European Commission stepped in to appease the situation.

Tensions rose last weekwhen the European Union told Spain should have a veto on extending any busines bargain to Gibraltar after Britain leaves the bloc.

London and Madrid have had a long and bitter spat over Gibraltar, which has been a British overseas territory for more than 300 years.

Fearing that Madrid was seeking to are benefiting from Brexit to impose its power over the enclave, Gibraltar reacted angrily to the EU move and London securely expressed its support for the territory.

A Spanish warship likewise sailed into quarrelled seas off Gibraltaron Tuesday, creating strains further, although such incidents are not uncommon.

The European Parliament on Wednesday overwhelmingly adopted tough blood-red cables for negotiations over a Brexit deal, on which EU lawmakers will have the final say in two years period, but omitted any mention of the question of Gibraltar.

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