miércoles, 8 de febrero de 2012

The Spanish Minister´s Ultimatum

The spanish Minister of Industry, Tourism and Energy - Jose Manuel Soria – has given a 10 days ultimátum to the Canary Islands in regards to the oil&gas prospective activities in its surrounding waters. It is a very brave statement from the Minister taking in consideration that he perfectly knows that Spain has no jurisdiction over these waters.

In fact these waters - and therefore any existing resources – can be either Moroccan or Canarian sovereign property. The waters and the identified oil&gas deposits cannot be Spanish in any way and therefore Spain can never ever claim to have any kind of jurisdiction over it.

These waters belong to Morocco but the Canary Islands – and not Spain- has an “option of sovereignty” over them. The Canary Islands has the right to claim sovereignty over these waters if, and only if, it declares itself independence, it becomes a self-governing commonwealth in association with other State or its granted full self-governing autonomy according to the U.N definition. Under these three status all territories, resources and waters will become sovereign property of the Canary Islands and its inhabitants. I repeat, the waters can be either Moroccan or Canarian but never ever can be Spanish ones. 
Morocco´s Exclusive Economic Zone reach and envelops most of the Canary Islands
Spain has no jurisdiction and no role to play in here. If the Spanish Minister is going to “authorize a prospective drilling” is because it has the consent from Morocco. That´s the reason why there was no tender process in the allotment of the exploration blocks as it is customary in the industry and required by public contracting regulations. On the contrary, the drilling rights were given arbitrarily to Repsol by Royal Decree. That´s also the reason why Repsol has not paid any amount for these rights.

It is all fake, a pantomime, propaganda, the dispute with Morocco over the delimitation of territorial waters is also a fake, a “false flag” operation. There is no conflict as to where the water border lies, just have to look at the offshore exploration blocks granted by Morocco and you will see it. They fully respect the Canary Islands´ “sovereignty option” according the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. Point. 
Morocco´s offshore blocks fully respect the international rules in regards to the territorial waters measured from the coastline
the canarian "sovereign option"
It is false that the territorial limit goes exactly through the middle of the highly prospective deposits as they try us to believe. It is a lie that Morocco pretends establishing the boundaries using the limit of the continental shelf instead of the coast line. Again, just look at the exploratory blocks granted by the Moroccan authorities and they show the contrary.

In fact, Morroco has acted fully correct and fully respectful with the Canary Islands´ sovereignty option over these waters, but the spanish internal propaganda is trying to make us believe the contrary. 
Spanish propaganda as to where the border lies

Another example of this intoxication and propaganda deals with the water depths. There is such level of hypocrisy that while Repsol is operating a deposit - Anchois-I - at 2.359 meters deep in the waters in front of Larache they have been pretending that water depths of 800-1.200 meters are a technical challenge.


There is only one logical explanation for this behaviour. The main priority of Spain is not to take control of the resources but to block any possibility that the Canary Islands take control of them for the benefit of its inhabitants because that will lead to independence. Dear Mr. Minister, you cannot give an ultimatum to the Canary Islands simply because you have no jurisdiction over these waters and resources. Full stop. It´s not your oil.

Jorge Dorta.


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