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‘Come and see for yourselves,’ SDGG tells UN

Photo via UN

The chairman of the Self Determination for Gibraltar Group on Tuesday called on the UN to send a visiting mission to Gibraltar to see for itself “what Gibraltar is about”.

In a speech to the UN Fourth Committee in New York, Richard Buttigieg said that despite the 30 years that have elapsed since the “so called” ‘last decade of decolonisation proclaimed by the UN, nothing had been done about Gibraltar.

“I understand that you may not want to offend third parties, but the visit is important,” Mr Buttigieg said.

“It would allow you to see what Gibraltar is about and would, I am sure, convince you that Gibraltar has done more than enough to be delisted.”

“And if we are wrong, you would at least be able to tell us so.”

“Yet no such visit has ever taken place. You will therefore forgive the people of Gibraltar for thinking that the United Nations does not care about us.”

“But you can prove us wrong by sending a visiting mission to Gibraltar.”

Mr Buttigieg said the people of Gibraltar were “remarkably resilient and tenacious” and would never give up their fight for self-determination.

He reminded the committee of the 1967 referendum in which Gibraltarians voted overwhelmingly to remain with Britain rather than pass under Spanish sovereignty.

“The people who made that decision did so in full knowledge of the consequences it might bring,” Mr Buttigieg said.

“And, unfortunately, they were proved right.”

“Instead of accepting the democratically expressed wishes of the people of Gibraltar, Spain commenced a political siege that impeded the flow of food and other essential supplies into our country as it closed the only land frontier between us and them.”

“A closure that led to the separation of entire families who were forced to live in different countries.”

But the SDGG added that “perhaps somewhat ironically” that period of hardship brought Gibraltarians closer together and helped forge the unique Gibraltarian identity.

“At the very heart of that identity, of our way of being, is a steadfast and unwavering desire to decide our own future,” he said.

“We do not wish unnecessary confrontation with anyone.”

“We do not seek to cause issues where there are none.”

“But we will never ever cease in our fight for self-determination.”

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