HC Deb 29 October 1980 vol 991 cc478-9
12. Mr. McQuarrie

asked the Lord Privy Seal what response he has received from the Spanish Government on the situation regarding the free movement of persons between Spain and Gibraltar.

Sir Ian Gilmour

The Spanish Government have recently assured us that their commitment to the Lisbon agreement remains firm. The Goverment continue to work for its early implementation.

Mr. McQuarrie

Does my right hon. Friend accept that the situation is deteriorating and is not assisting the Gibraltarians? My right hon. Friend is aware of the recent visit I made to the mayors in El Campo, who are keen to have a settlement. Does he agree that there should be detente between the people of Gibraltar and the people of El Campo, with a view to arriving at a settlement? Does he further agree that it would be helpful to have the settlement before Christmas to avoid disappointment similar to that experienced by the people of Gibraltar on 3 June, when the gates remained closed?

Sir I. Gilmour

I agree that the situation is deteriorating in the sense that the agreement that we hoped would come into force shortly after 1 June still has not come into effect. We greatly regret the delay. I agree with what my hon. Friend says about detente. I very much hope that the agreement will come into force well before Christmas.

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