47 Facts About Gibraltar


Gibraltar, is a British Overseas Territory and city located at the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula.

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Gibraltar's economy is based largely on tourism, online gambling, financial services, and bunkering.

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Sovereignty of Gibraltar is a point of contention in Anglo-Spanish relations, as Spain asserts a claim to the territory.

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In December 2020, the UK and Spain agreed in principle to a basis on which the UK and the EU might negotiate terms for Gibraltar to participate in aspects of the Schengen Agreement to facilitate border movements.

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The caves of Gibraltar continued to be used by Homo sapiens after the final extinction of the Neanderthals.

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Gibraltar was known as Mons Calpe, a name perhaps of Phoenician origin.

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In 1462, Gibraltar was captured by Juan Alonso de Guzman, 1st Duke of Medina Sidonia, from the Emirate of Granada.

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Six years later, Gibraltar was restored to the Duke of Medina Sidonia, who sold it in 1474 to a group of 4, 350 conversos from Cordova and Seville and in exchange for maintaining the garrison of the town for two years, after which time they were expelled, returning to their home towns or moving on to other parts of Spain.

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In 1501, Gibraltar passed back to the Spanish Crown, and Isabella I of Castile issued a Royal Warrant granting Gibraltar the coat of arms that it still uses.

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Unsuccessful attempts by Spanish monarchs to regain Gibraltar were made, with the siege of 1727, and again with the Great Siege of Gibraltar, during the American War of Independence.

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On 18 October 2018, however, Spain seemed to have reached an agreement with the United Kingdom in relation to its objections to Gibraltar leaving the EU with the UK, with Spain's prime minister Pedro Sanchez stating, "Gibraltar will no longer be a problem in arriving at a Brexit deal.

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On 31 December 2020, the UK and Spain agreed in principle on a basis for the EU and the UK to negotiate an agreement through which Gibraltar would participate in the Schengen Area, to avoid a hard border with Spain.

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Under its current constitution, Gibraltar has almost complete internal self-governance through a parliament elected for a term of up to four years.

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Gibraltar was part of the European Union, having joined through the European Communities Act 1972, which gave effect to the Treaty of Accession 1972, as a dependent territory of the United Kingdom under what was then article 227(4) of the Treaty Establishing the European Community covering special member state territories, with exemption from some areas such as the European Union Customs Union, Common Agricultural Policy and the Schengen Area.

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Nevertheless, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez stated on 18 October 2018 that the Gibraltar protocol had been "resolved" and that Spain will hold no objection when Gibraltar leaves the EU with Britain.

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Gibraltar was nominated to be included on the United Nations list of non-self-governing territories by the United Kingdom when the list was created in 1946 and has been listed ever since.

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Gibraltar is not a member of the Commonwealth of Nations in its own right and is represented by the United Kingdom but was granted Associate Membership of the Commonwealth Foundation in 2004.

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Gibraltar has no administrative divisions but is divided into seven Major Residential Areas.

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Gibraltar has a Mediterranean climate, with mild, rainy winters and summers that are very warm to hot and humid, but with very little rainfall.

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Gibraltar is the only place in Europe where the Gibraltar candytuft is found growing in the wild; the plant is otherwise native to North Africa.

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In 1991, Graham Watson, Gibraltar's MEP, highlighted conservationists' fears that urban development, tourism and invasive plant species were threatening Gibraltar's own plants as well as birds and bat species.

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In May 2016, a report by the World Health Organization showed that Gibraltar had the worst air quality in any British territory.

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Today, Gibraltar's economy is dominated by four main sectors: financial services, online gambling, shipping, and tourism, which includes duty-free retail sales to visitors.

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Gibraltar is a popular port for cruise ships and attracts day visitors from resorts in Spain.

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In 1967, Gibraltar enacted the Companies Ordinance (now an Act), which provided for special tax treatment for international business.

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Gibraltar has several attractive attributes as a financial centre, including a common law legal system and access to the EU single market in financial services.

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In January 2018, Gibraltar introduced a regulatory framework for Distributed Ledger Technology, with the aim of pursuing a “more flexible, adaptive approach.

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Unofficially, most retail outlets in Gibraltar accept the euro, though some payphones and the Royal Gibraltar Post Office, along with all other government offices, do not.

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Gibraltar is one of the most densely populated territories in the world, with a usually-resident population in 2012 of 32, 194 equivalent to approximately 4, 959 inhabitants per square kilometre.

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Demographics of Gibraltar reflect the many European and other economic migrants who came to the Rock over 300 years ago, after almost all of the Spanish population left in 1704.

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Education in Gibraltar generally follows the English model, operating within a three tier system.

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Gibraltar has 15 state schools, two private schools and a college of further education, Gibraltar College.

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Government secondary schools are Bayside Comprehensive School for boys and Westside School for girls, and Prior Park School Gibraltar is an independent coeducational secondary school.

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Gibraltar Broadcasting Corporation operates a television and radio station on UHF, VHF and medium-wave.

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Gibraltar was confirmed as UEFA's 54th member on 24 May 2013 as a result of Court of Arbitration for Sport arbitration and played in Euro 2016 qualifications.

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Subsequently, Gibraltar applied for FIFA membership but this bid was turned down.

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Gibraltar is believed to be the birthplace of the rugby variant Tag Rugby.

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Gibraltar has a digital telephone exchange supported by a fibre optic and copper infrastructure; the telephone operator Gibtelecom operates a GSM network.

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International Direct Dialling is provided, and Gibraltar was allocated the access code +350 by the International Telecommunication Union.

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In 1989, and in anticipation of service to cities outside the UK, Gibraltar Airways changed its name to GB Airways with the belief that a new name would incur fewer political problems.

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Until entering administration in October 2017, Monarch Airlines operated the largest number of flights between the United Kingdom and Gibraltar, with scheduled services between Gibraltar and Luton, London Gatwick, Birmingham and Manchester.

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Water supply and sanitation in Gibraltar have been major concerns for its inhabitants throughout its history.

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In general, the Gibraltar force follows British police models in its dress and its mostly male constables and sergeants on foot patrol wear the traditional custodian helmet, the headgear of the British "bobby on the beat".

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On 24 September 2015, the Freedom of the City of Gibraltar was conferred upon the RGP by the Mayor, Adolfo Canepa.

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Gibraltar has an important role in UKSIGINT and provides a vital strategic part of the United Kingdom communications gathering and monitoring network in the Mediterranean and North Africa.

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Gibraltar was one of four Imperial fortress colonies, along with Bermuda, Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Malta.

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Gibraltar has one sister city, as designated by Sister Cities International:.

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