Spain–United Kingdom relations
British-Spanish relations, also called Anglo-Spanish relations, are the bilateral
international relationsbetween the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and the Kingdom of Spain.
The history of British-Spanish relations is complicated by the political heritage of the two countries. Neither the United Kingdom nor Spain has a unique constitutional ancestor; the United Kingdom was originally created by a union of the kingdoms of England and Scotland (and later joined by Ireland), whilst the Kingdom of Spain was initially created by a union of the kingdoms of Castile and Aragon. they have also been complicated by the fact that both the United Kingdom and Spain were both imperial powers, after the same land, an occurrence which is still being played out to this day with disputed ownership/status of Gibraltar.
For centuries, the role of England, and subsequently the United Kingdom, in Iberia was coloured by the
Anglo-Portuguese Alliance. Relations with Portugal always have been closer than those with Spain, and Spain and the United Kingdom have gone to war twice over Portugal's independence.
In 1384, at the height of the
Hundred Years' War, England provided reinforcements to King João I to thwart a French-backed Castilian invasion. These forces saw action at the decisive battles of Trancoso and Aljubarrota, and proved to be vital in securing the continued independence of Portugal from its larger neighbours.
The alliance submerged into crisis when Portugal supported Joan of Castile instead of her aunt
Isabella I of Castileduring the War of the Castilian Successionof 1474-1479, because France also supported Joan's candidature. In the following years, the English collaborated with the Catholic Monarchs, there were weddings between English and Spanish heir princes and even a small group of English soldiers fought in the Castilian side during the conquest of Granada. However, the struggle of Elizabeth I of Englandagainst Philip II of Spainin the 16th century led to the new English support of Portuguese independent movement, that finished in 1640 with the crowning of king João IV of Portugal(non recognized by Spain until 1668). In the following centuries, Portugal and the United Kingdom were closely allies in their politics and wars against Spain, who become a closely collaborator of France after the Spanish War of Succession(1700-1714) that established the House of Bourbonin the Spanish throne.
Age of Exploration
Henry VIII of England, who had made a political match with Catherine of Aragon(a marriage that was later annulled by Henry), made a series of short-lived alliances with Carlos I against France during the Italian War of 1521and the Italian War of 1542. Phillip II of Spainmarried Mary I of England, making them King and Queen of Spain and of England and Ireland, each monarch of one and consort of the other. Mary's early death without issue prevented a closer personal unionof the countries.
The late sixteenth century saw England and Spain at war again. For the main part, the Anglo-Spanish War was caused by religious differences, the execution of Mary, Queen of Scots and the raging
Eighty Years' War, but it came at a time of Spanish occupation and near-annexation of Portugal, which was undergoing a succession crisis of its own. Although most battles were fought in the Caribbean, it is best remembered for the fate of the Spanish Armada, the defeat of which is seen by many Britons as the watershed of Spanish power in Europe, even though the war petered out into a stalemate.
The French Wars
War of the Spanish Successionsaw England and its allies invade Spain in an attempt to force the Habsburgpretender onto the Spanish throne against the wishes of the Spanish people, who rallied to the Bourbon prince the Duc of Anjou.Fact|date=September 2008 In this war, Spain lost Gibraltarand Minorca.
This set the scene for Spanish alliances with France against the United Kingdom in the later wars of the 18th century. The strength of the British navy tended to weaken Spain's control over its international empire.Fact|date=February 2008
At the start of the
Napoleonic Wars, Spain again found itself allied with France, and again found itself outgunned at sea, notably at the Battle of Trafalgar. British attempts to capture parts of the Spanish colonial empire were less successful and included failures at Buenos Aires, Puerto Rico, and the Canary Islands. When Napoleon invaded Iberia to force Portugal to accept the Continental System, and to place his brother on the Spanish throne, the British and (most) Spanish ended up on the same side, united against French invasion. A united British-Spanish-Portuguese army, under the command of the Duke of Wellington, eventually forced the French out of Spain, in what the Spanish came to call their War of Independence.
Atlantic Slave Trade
In the 19th Century, the
British Empirewas at the height of its power, and the United Kingdom sought to end the Atlantic slave trade, the process by which slave stocks in the Americas were replenished and enlarged, which the United Kingdom had outlawed in 1807.
At the 1817 London Conference, the British pressured the major European colonial powers, including Spain, to agree to abolish the slave trade. Under the agreement, Spain agreed to end the slave trade north of the
equatorimmediately, and south of the Equator by 1820. British naval vessels were given the right to search suspected slavers. Despite overwhelming British naval supremacy, the trade continued. In 1835, the Anglo-Spanish agreement on the slave trade was renewed, and the rights of British captains to board and search Spanish ships were expanded. Mixed British-Spanish commissions were established at Freetownand Havana. Vessels carrying specified 'equipment articles' (including extra mess gear, lumber, foodstuffs) were declared " prima facie" to be slavers. However, after the First Carlist War, the leverage afforded by British political support for the Spanish government declined, and the British abolitionist movement focused on the United Statesand Brazil. Slavery was abolished in Spain's main Caribbean colony, Cuba, in 1888, over fifty years after the institution was outlawed across the British Empire.
Carlist Wars, Spain was wracked by civil war, as a result of a power struggle between the royal heir, Isabella and Carlists, led by the Pretender, Don Carlos, her uncle. Fearing a resurgent theocratic Spain, the possible re-emergence of long-silent pretenders to the British throne, a new Spanish Monarch that might refuse to accept the independence of Spain's lost Latin American colonies, and domestic secessionism (particularly amongst Irish Catholics), the United Kingdom steadfastly supported Isabella.
In 1835, the United Kingdom instigated the foundation of the
Quadruple Alliance, between the UK, Spain, France, and Portugal, which supported Queen Isabella's reign. During the First Carlist War, the United Kingdom subsidised the Spanish armed forces, just as it had done during the Peninsular War. This was vital to the Spanish war economy, as, since the Napoleonic Wars, the Spanish armed forces had been poorly funded, a legacy of the loss of the majority of Spain's colonial empire. Furthermore, the UK provided a large direct military contribution; the 10,000-strong British Legion, led by George de Lacy Evans, saw action in Navarreand contributed greatly to the suppression of the revolt.
Leonora of Englandand Alfonso VIII of Castile
Richard I of Englandand Berengaria of Navarre
Edward I of Englandand Eleanor of Castile
John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancasterand Constance of Castile
Katherine of Lancasterand Henry III of Castile
Henry IV of Englandand Joanna of Navarre
Arthur, Prince of Walesand Catherine of Aragon
Henry VIII of Englandand Catherine of Aragon
Mary I of Englandand Philip II of Spain
Victoria Eugenie of Battenbergand Alfonso XIII of Spain
Wars between the British and the Spanish include:
*First War of Portuguese Independence of 1383-1385
*Anglo-Spanish War of 1585-1604 was part of the
Eighty Years' War.:* Spanish Armada(1588):* English Armada(1589)
*Anglo-Spanish War of 1625-1630 was part of the
Thirty Years' War.
*Anglo-Spanish War of 1654-1660 included the capture of
War of the Spanish Succession(1702-1713)
War of the Quadruple Alliance(1718-1720)
War of Jenkins' Ear(1739-1742), which later merged into the War of the Austrian Succession(1740-1748)
*Anglo-Spanish War of 1761-1763 was part of the
Seven Years' War
*Anglo-Spanish War of 1779-1783 was part of the
American Revolutionary War.
*Anglo-Spanish War of 1804-1807 was part of the
The status of
Gibraltaris a perennial issue in relations between the two nations, dating back to the original conflicts and treaties in the early 18th Century. The official status of Gibraltar is a British overseas territory. Conquered by Britain in 1704, the Spanish King transferred the territory to the Crown of Great Britain in 1713 under the terms of Article X of the Treaty of Utrecht.
In two referendums, held in 1967 and 2002, the people of Gibraltar rejected any proposal for the transfer of sovereignty to Spain. The 2002 referendum was on a proposal for joint sovereignty which at one stage was supported by the UK Government. Spain claims that the Gibraltar issue is a bilateral question between Spain and the UK and ignores the democratically expressed wishes of the Gibraltarians denying their right to self-determination. The Gibraltar Constitution endorsed and approved by HMG states:
"Her Majesty’s Government will never enter into arrangements under which the people of Gibraltar would pass under the sovereignty of another state against their freely and democratically expressed wishes." [ [http://www.gibnet.com/texts/draft_06.pdf Gibraltar Constitution] ]
The United Kingdom and Spain have had several recent disputes over
fishingrights, particularly with regards to the European Union's Common Fisheries Policy. When Spain acceded to the European Union, in 1982, Spain had the world's sixth largest fishing fleet, [ [http://www.american.edu/ted/UKCOD.HTM "UK and Spain Fishing Dispute"] . American University, 11 January 1997. Accessed 22 June 2006.] and much of the economies of Galicia, Asturias, and Cantabriadepended upon catches by Spanish boats outside Spain's national Exclusive Economic Zone, just as they do today.
To prevent the fleets of other EU members (particularly Spain) taking up the UK's Common Fisheries Policy quota, the UK sought to create a framework that discriminated between British- and Spanish-owned boats, regardless of flag flown, so that its waters wouldn't be over-fished by foreign-owned trawlers. Due to fishing's importance to some of the regional economies of Spain, the Spanish government protested vehemently, but had no power to prevent the UK determining its own domestic policies. However, when the
Single European Actwas implemented, in 1987, this became illegal under EU law, and a Spanish company successfully challenged the right of the British government to prevent Spanish fishermen taking up the British quota in what has now become known as the Factortame case. In total, £55m has been paid out by the British government to Spanish parties (both public and private) for loss of earnings. [ [http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200001/cmhansrd/vo010208/text/10208w01.htm House of Commons Written Answers for 8 February 2001] . Parliament of the United Kingdom, 8 February 2001. Accessed 22 June 2006.]
To this day, the large Spanish fishing fleet does the majority of its fishing outside Spain's EEZ, as far away as
Canadaand Namibia. [ [http://www.economist.com.na/17mar/17-03-30.htm "Iyambo in fish talks with Spanish fisheries minister"] . "Namibia Economist", 17 March 2006. Accessed 22 June 2006.] Nonetheless, a large part of its business comes from fishing in the waters of northern Europe, particularly those of the United Kingdom and Ireland. At times of debate of the United Kingdom's declining fish stocks, this has caused strained relations between Spain and the UK, and particularly between Spain and the membership of the devolved Scottish institutions, since Scotland is more dependent upon fishing than the rest of the UK.
In 2001 60,000 Spanish born people were living in the UK, and 160,000 British people were of Spanish descent, in total estimates state 960,000 UK citizensas having full or partial Spanish blood (with the remaining 800,000 being South Americans of Spanish descent). In comparison it is estimated that 990,000 British born people live in Spain, the ancestral numbers are likely to be much, much lower, as British people have only recently begun to migrate to Spain (the coastal areas in particular) post retirement and/ or for work. See also
Spanish Briton, Latin American Briton.
The list below is of British and Spanish
*Chesham, Buckinghamshire and Archena, Murcia
*Glasgow, Greater Glasgow and Barcelona, Barcelona
*Lymington, Hampshire and Almansa, Castile-La Mancha
*Manchester, Greater Manchester and Córdoba, Andalucía
*Peterborough, Cambridgeshire and Alcalá de Henares, Madrid
*Plymouth, Devon and San Sebastián, Guipúzcoa
*Sherborne, Dorset and Altea, Valencia
*Stafford, Staffordshire and Tarragona, TarragonaClackmannanshire and Espartinas
Both Spain and the United Kingdom are members of many
international organisations. Those listed in bold are organisations to which both countries are party.
African Development Bank(AfDB), Asian Development Bank(AsDB), Australia Group, Central American Bank for Economic Integration(BCIE), Bank for International Settlements(BIS), Council of Europe(CE), European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council(EAPC), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development(EBRD), European Investment Bank(EIB), Economic and Monetary Union (EMU), European Space Agency(ESA), European Union(EU), Food and Agriculture Organization(FAO), Inter-American Development Bank(IADB), International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA), International Bank for Reconstruction and Development(IBRD), International Civil Aviation Organization(ICAO), International Chamber of Commerce(ICC), International Criminal Court(ICCt), International Confederation of Free Trade Unions(ICFTU), ICRM, International Development Association(IDA), International Energy Agency(IEA), International Fund for Agricultural Development(IFAD), International Finance Corporation(IFC), International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement(IFRCS), International Hydrographic Organization(IHO), International Labour Organization(ILO), International Monetary Fund(IMF), International Maritime Organization(IMO), International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL), International Olympic Committee(IOC), International Organization for Migration(IOM) (observer), International Organization for Standardization(ISO), International Telecommunication Union(ITU), LAIA (observer), Latin Union, Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency(MIGA), United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti(MINUSTAH), United Nations Organization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo(MONUC), Non-Aligned Movement(NAM) (guest), North Atlantic Treaty Organisation(NATO), NEA, Nuclear Suppliers Group(NSG), OAS (observer), Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development(OECD), United Nations Operation in Burundi(ONUB), Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons(OPCW), Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe(OSCE), Paris Club, Permanent Court of Arbitration(PCA), United Nations(UN), UNCTAD, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), UNIDO, UNMEE, UNMIS, Universal Postal Union(UPU), WCL, World Customs Organization(WCO), Western European Union(WEU), World Health Organization(WHO), World Intellectual Property Organization(WIPO), World Meteorological Organization(WMO), World Tourism Organization(WToO), World Trade Organization(WTO), Zangger Committee(ZC)
African Development Bank(AfDB), Australia, New Zealand, United States Security Treaty (ANZUS), Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation(APEC), ARF, Asian Development Bank(AsDB), Association of Southeast Asian Nations(ASEAN) (dialogue partner), Australia Group, Bank for International Settlements(BIS), Council of the Baltic Sea States(CBSS) (observer), Council of Europe(CE) (observer), European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) (observer), CP, Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council(EAPC), European Bank for Reconstruction and Development(EBRD), European Union(EU), Food and Agriculture Organization(FAO), G-5, G7, G8, G10, Inter-American Development Bank(IADB), International Atomic Energy Agency(IAEA), International Bank for Reconstruction and Development(IBRD), International Civil Aviation Organization(ICAO), International Chamber of Commerce(ICC), International Confederation of Free Trade Unions(ICFTU), ICRM, International Development Association(IDA), International Energy Agency(IEA), International Fund for Agricultural Development(IFAD), International Finance Corporation(IFC), International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement(IFRCS), International Hydrographic Organization(IHO), International Labour Organization(ILO), International Monetary Fund(IMF), International Maritime Organization(IMO), International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL), International Olympic Committee(IOC), International Organization for Migration(IOM), International Organization for Standardization(ISO), International Telecommunication Union(ITU), Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency(MIGA), United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti(MINUSTAH), New Zealand Australia Free Trade Agreement(NAFTA), Non-Aligned Movement(NAM) (guest), North Atlantic Treaty Organisation(NATO), NEA, Nuclear Suppliers Group(NSG), OAS, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development(OECD), Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons(OPCW), Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe(OSCE), Paris Club, Permanent Court of Arbitration(PCA), Pacific Islands Forum(PIF) (partner), SPC, United Nations(UN), United Nations Security Council, UNCTAD, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), United Nations Institute for Training and Research(UNITAR), UNMEE, UNMIL, United Nations Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission(UNMOVIC), United Nations Observer Mission in Georgia(UNOMIG), United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East(UNRWA), United Nations Truce Supervision Organization(UNTSO), Universal Postal Union(UPU), WCL, World Customs Organization(WCO), World Health Organization(WHO), World Intellectual Property Organization(WIPO), World Meteorological Organization(WMO), World Trade Organization(WTO), Zangger Committee(ZC)
Ambassadors from the United Kingdom to Spain
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