Gibraltar: Fury as Spanish officers search British diplomatic bag at border

Foreign Office spokesman described incident as ‘serious infringement’ of diplomatic protocols

Heather Saul

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

The Foreign Office has  made a formal complaint after a British diplomatic bag was opened and searched by Spanish Guardia Civil officers on the border with Gibraltar.

The incident, which occurred on Friday, was described by a Foreign Office spokesman as a “serious infringement” of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.

“Diplomatic bags are inviolable,” the spokesman said. Officials are now seeking assurances from the Spanish that there will be no repeat of the incident, which follows months of tension between London and Madrid over the British overseas territory.

The British embassy in Madrid has also made a “formal diplomatic protest” to Spain’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and and requested that it investigate the incident.

The bag was searched when a courier was taking it across the border from Gibraltar into Spain, according to The Gibraltar Chronicle.

No explanation has been given as to why it was being carried across the land border or why the Spanish authorities decided to open it. The Foreign Office refused to discuss the contents of the bag.

Categories: Escalation / Destabilization Conflict

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