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Statement from the Chief Minister on the Crisis in Ukraine - 121/2022

February 24, 2022

Today’s actions by Russia, launching a full-scale invasion of a sovereign, democratic nation without any provocation or reasonable excuse, is nothing short of appalling.

None of us expected to witness such unforgivable aggression in Europe in our lifetimes.

Gibraltar therefore joins with the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, leaders of other nations and people around the World in condemning this action in the most strident terms.

Our thoughts and prayers today are with the people of Ukraine.

Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar, within the limits of our powers, will join with and support Her Majesty’s Government in London in taking whatever action is necessary to persuade Russia to reverse its decision and to withdraw its forces from Ukraine, and to stop any other adverse interference in that country which undermines its sovereignty.

To that end, whatever sanctions and other penalties the United Kingdom imposes on

Russia will automatically be recognised and enforced in and by Gibraltar.

HE The Governor, Vice Admiral Sir David Steel, and I today convened a meeting of the Gibraltar Security Council.

We considered if our overall security posture needs to change. We decided that, given there has been no specific intelligence or otherwise to suggest that Gibraltar is targeted in any way, that security posture will remain as it is now.

However, our police forces, the Royal Gibraltar Police and the Gibraltar Defence Police, our Borders and Coastguard Agency and HM Customs have heightened their alert state as a precautionary measure for the time being.

The Governor and I remain in constant contact and, together with my colleagues in Government, are keeping our territorial security and well-being under constant review.

Likewise, and repeating the Government’s recent message to individuals and commercial organisations on Cyber security, the Government has today circulated to every public servant a notice alerting them to the potential of cyber interference and the need for care in the use and application of such systems.

The Government urges everyone to make proper provision for the protection of their digital systems.

Today’s events leave us all shocked and anxious, for Ukraine and for the whole of Europe.

Gibraltar has endured war and knows what it means, especially as it affects civilians.

Gibraltar will therefore stand shoulder to shoulder with our friends and allies across Europe at this dark hour, but especially alongside our friends in Ukraine with whom we stand in solidarity at this dark moment in modern European history.