Government of Gibraltar Welcomes RHIB Ban

Her Majesty’s Government of Gibraltar welcomes the decision of the Spanish Cabinet announced today to ban Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats.

These types of boats (commonly referred to as RHIBs) are frequently used by drug smugglers.

RHIBs were banned in Gibraltar in 1995 and have been prohibited imports since then.

The Chief Minister of Government of Gibraltar, Fabian Picardo QC MP, said: “This decision has been one that is long overdue.

The fact that the incoming PSOE socialist administration has made provision to ban these vessels so quickly after taking office is, I believe, a demonstration of the deep understanding there is now in parts of the political administration in Madrid of the real issues facing the Campo de Gibraltar.

I warmly welcome this move. It will help generally for the re-establishment of respect for the Rule of Law.

‘The continued presence of RHIBs in the waters around Gibraltar is as dangerous to the people of Gibraltar who are on beaches or out enjoying the use of pleasure craft, as it is to the people of the Campo de Gibraltar or beyond.

This is an important step in the fight against drug trafficking in the region: Gibraltar and its law enforcement agencies are an important and committed part of this fight.

This first move by the administration of Pedro Sanchez is a good and welcome one and it comes on the heels of visits by various ministers to the neighbouring region already, within six weeks of them taking office.

Law abiding people from Gibraltar and the Campo de Gibraltar will see this as a positive and welcome move.

I want to highlight the repeated calls for this move by Juan Franco, the Mayor of La Linea and PSOE member of the Congreso de los Diputados and a great friend of Gibraltar, Salvador De La Encina. Both have previously highlighted how effective the banning of RHIBs in Gibraltar was when it was effected by the GSLP Government in 1995.”