For all the intelligence that The Hon Peter Caruana QC is attributed with, why is he gambling with Gibraltar's sovereignty? Is it really a good idea to seek that the European Court adjudicates on this issue? It is this issue that Mr Caruana is asking it to adjudicate on in the case that, as Chief Minister of Gibraltar, he brings before the European Court on the issue of territorial waters.
It seems that whilst the UK Government seeks to defend its (and Gibraltar's) position on the basis of control, Mr Caruana considers it wise for the European Court (made up of judge's from different member states) to decide the issue as one of sovereignty. The UK government seems to have studiously and consciously avoided the need for the European Court to adjudicate on British sovereignty.
Apart from the the legal difficulty that this situation poses for Mr Caruana, in that sovereignty lies with Britain and not with Gibraltar with the UK not taking the point, what will the consequences be to Gibraltar, and the UK, if the European Court were to decide that, on a strict interpretation of the Treaty of Utrecht, Britain has no sovereign territorial waters around Gibraltar but simply rights of ingress and egress from the port? This would be the biggest and most serious set back to the case on British sovereignty over Gibraltar ever, with one unavoidable and irreversible result, that once decided the decision will be set in stone, at least, insofar as concerns the EEC.
Mr Caruana, is it really the UK's arguments that are fraught with danger, or are they those that you have adopted on behalf of Gibraltar? Perhaps a deep breath and a reassessment of your position is called for. It is not so much that the UK should be right and can succeed in its arguments, as you have said, it is more that you should be right and succeed in your arguments. If you lose that gamble and the ball falls on the wrong colour it is Gibraltar that will face the serious consequences for ever.