‘Be ferocious, you’re at the bottom of the list,’ Clegg tells Gibraltar
Gibraltarians must be “very ferocious” in their demands to London ahead of Brexit negotiations, former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said this week, warning that Gibraltar’s fate “will be at the very bottom of Theresa May’s preoccupations”.
Mr Clegg, who is currently the Liberal Democrats’ Brexit spokesman, made the comments at an event held at Queen Mary, University of London’s Mile End campus on Thursday evening. The university later published an audio recording of the event online.
Asked by former YGTV reporter Nicole Macedo what the implications for Gibraltar would be in the forthcoming talks, Mr Clegg said Gibraltar had been put in “the most impossible position” and added that his heart goes out to the Rock.
“The fate of Gibraltar will be at the very bottom of the list of preoccupations of Theresa May when she is in those negotiations,” he said.
Mr Clegg, whose wife is Spanish, therefore urged Gibraltarians to be “very ferocious and uncharacteristically uncompromising in your demands of London”.
He added: “The fact that the Prime Minister has chosen to persist with the hardest, most remorseless and unforgiving form of Brexit just demonstrates how, never mind Gibraltar, she doesn’t care about Scottish opinion, Northern Irish opinion, opinion dare I say it in London either,” he said.
Mr Clegg also said Spain was unlikely to “bend over backwards” to help Gibraltar.
“I don’t think Spain has got very many incentives, do they?” he said.
He also took a swipe at Spain’s former Foreign Minister, José Manuel García-Margallo, who he described as “a right pain” and explained that he used to “constantly have run-ins” with him when he was in government.
“He had a real bee in his bonnet about Gibraltar,” Mr Clegg added.