The Socialist mayor of La Linea, Gemma Araujo, has said the King’s planned visit to Algeciras this week is a “mistake”.
She said the media had portrayed it as support for the Guardia Civil’s protection of the fishing boats involved in the dispute with Gibraltar over fishing rights.
However, the visit was announced when the Duke and Duchess of Wessex were visiting Gibraltar as part of the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations.
The mayor said 53 of the boats worked out of La Linea and it was hard to understand why the King was supporting those who keep watch (the Guardia) and not those who are suffering (the fishermen).
The La Linea fishermen have preferred to stay at home until an agreement is negotiated between the two sides and have criticised their Algeciras counterparts for insisting on fishing in the disputed waters and encouraging the confrontation between the Guardia Civil and the Royal Navy.
Mayor Araujo said the town that had suffered most during the long years of confrontation over the Rock had been La Linea, “where Spain begins”.