March 15, 2020
Her Majesty's Government of Gibraltar notes the headlines appearing in regional online reporting outlets that suggest that the President of the Junta de Andalusia, Snr Juan Manuel Moreno Bonilla has called for the closure of the frontier between Gibraltar and Spain.
The Chief Minister, the Hon Fabian Picardo QC MP, has a few moments ago this evening once again spoken to the President of the Junta.
Snr Moreno Bonilla has confirmed that those reports are UNTRUE and that he does not believe there is any reason for the border between Spain and Gibraltar should close now. The President of the Junta reminded Mr Picardo that he spoke highly today of the measures being taken by Gibraltar as a result of Covid-19 and in the context of the Spanish Government's own declared State of Emergency. He said that in his call with President Sanchez, he had called for a plan to address issues with other borders, but it was a misinterpretation of his words to suggest that this was a reference in any way to the border with Gibraltar.
Snr Moreno Bonilla insisted that the Chief Minister should make this clarification clear and that he would also seek to ensure, himself, that the misinterpretation of his words should be corrected.
The Chief Minister said: "I am very grateful for the very kind words from the President of the Junta during the course of his press conference and for his express clarification when I asked to speak to him again this evening. The suggestion that Snr Moreno Bonilla had called for the closure of the frontier was contrary to his express statements of support for the attitude Gibraltar is taking in relation to dealing with slowing the inevitable spread of Covid-19. The relationship we have established in these past days is a positive one that enables us to address problems of this sort when they arise."