Gibraltar arrests three Spaniards on fishing boat

7th August 2013, Comments 0 comments

Police in Gibraltar said they had arrested Wednesday three Spaniards onboard a fishing boat who were suspected of tobacco smuggling, as political tension escalated over the territory.

The arrests were part of "an operation to combat tobacco smuggling," police said in a statement, adding that three Gibraltarians had also been arrested on a nearby beach.

The arrests were "unrelated to any fishing or nature protection legislation matters," the police said, dismissing any connection with Gibraltar and Spanish authorities' dispute over fishing rights.

British Prime Minister David Cameron on Wednesday warned his Spanish counterpart Mariano Rajoy that Gibraltar border tensions risked damaging relations between London and Madrid.

Rajoy told Cameron that Gibraltar's move to build an artificial reef aimed at stopping alleged incursions by Spanish fishing boats was "unacceptable".

© 2013 AFP

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