In a brief to a number of Members of Congress, the Deputy Chief Minister Dr Joseph Garcia has highlighted the key role that Gibraltar has played over the centuries to safeguard the interests of liberty and democracy. This was one of various engagements with twenty Congressional offices in a busy schedule over a two and a half day visit.
There was also a group meeting as well as individual meetings with Congressional offices in the House of Representatives and in the Senate belonging to both the Republican and the Democratic parties.
Dr Garcia explained the historical position of Gibraltar in relation to the wider defence interests of the United Kingdom and the United States in the Mediterranean area. He went over the Constitutional position of Gibraltar as an Overseas Territory of the United Kingdom and expressed the view that a British Gibraltar was in the best interests of the United States.
The Deputy Chief Minister went over the involvement of Gibraltar in the first foreign operation by the United States against the Barbary pirates in 1801. He also stressed the significance of General Eisenhower planning Operation Torch, the liberation of North Africa, from a base inside the Rock itself during the Second World War. He outlined the recent visits by the US military and said that Gibraltar was a friendly port where the armed forces of the United States continued to be very welcome.
Dr Garcia also met with Republican Congressman George Holding. They went over the Congressional visit to Gibraltar earlier this year and discussed the resolution supporting self- determination that had been tabled in the House of Representatives.