Published: Sat, July 15, 2017
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

Gibraltar outraged as King of Spain refuses to acknowledge the Rock's autonomy

Gibraltar outraged as King of Spain refuses to acknowledge the Rock's autonomy

Prior to Felipe's speech, the topic was broached during a question-and-answer session in the House of Commons, where a conservative lawmaker asked whether Prime Minister Theresa May meant to reaffirm Britain's control of Gibraltar during talks with the Spanish monarch.

Officials refused to be drawn on the focus of the meeting but talks may include the future of Gibraltar after the king said on Wednesday he was confident the nations would overcome their "differences" and find a solution "acceptable to all involved".

'Will he ask the Prime Minister to remind the King of Spain that Gibraltar is British and that its sovereignty will remain paramount?'

Flags of the overseas territories and dependencies are regularly raised outside Parliament for state occasions like the King's visit, and Gibraltar's flag is placed in the middle because they are in alphabetical order.

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Princess Anne was pictured curtsying to Spain's King Felipe.

"In Gibraltar the people have spoken loud and clear".

The British monarch made the comments at last night's glittering event inside Buckingham Palace, just hours after the Spanish king addressed both Houses of Parliament.

It is the first state visit by a Spanish king to the United Kingdom since Felipe's dad King Juan Carlos made the trip 31 years ago.

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Felipe at 6ft 5in towered over the Queen and he kissed his distant relative on the cheek and hand when they met.

A state banquet is to be held on Wednesday evening for the Spanish royals in the ballroom of Buckingham Palace, where they are staying. Both royal lines are descended from Queen Victoria.

Gifts are traditionally exchanged between the Queen and her guests and the monarch was presented with copies of love letters between Princess Victoria Eugenie, Felipe's great-grandmother and Queen Victoria's granddaughter, and King Alfonso XIII of Spain.

This morning, the royal couple arrived in Britain and were quickly brisked away to meet the Queen and Prince Philip.

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The Dean of the Abbey, John Hall, told the Spanish royals that Westminster Abbey is where monarchs have their coronations - Queen Elizabeth's was in June 1953 - and many great men and women are buried there.

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