World Bulletin/News Desk
There is no evidence that Spain broke EU law by imposing tight controls at its border with Gibraltar, the European Union's executive said on Friday.
The European Commission sent inspectors to the British territory in September to investigate a border dispute that strained relations between London and Madrid.
In a row that began over fishing waters, Britain and Gibraltar complained to Brussels that Spain was applying over-zealous border controls, causing long lines for workers and tourists entering and leaving the rocky outcrop near the tip of southern Spain.
"The Commission has not found evidence to conclude that the checks on persons and goods as operated by the Spanish authorities at the crossing point ... have infringed the relevant provisions of Union law," it said in a statement.
The Commission wrote to the Spanish and British governments recommending ways to improve the flow of people and traffic through the border crossings and calling on Britain to share intelligence with Spain on tobacco-smuggling.
Spain has complained that Gibraltar has not done enough to stem what it says is an increasing flow of smuggled cigarettes out of the territory, which has a low sales tax. Cigarettes are about 40 percent cheaper on "the Rock" than in Spain.Last Mod: 15 Kasım 2013, 14:23