A third of Gibraltarians took part.

Around a third of Gibraltar's 30'000 people packed the streets of the small British colony yesterday in a protest against talks between London and Madrid on sharing sovereignty over the rocky outcrop. Chief Minister Peter Caruana urged Gibraltarians to produce a massive “No” vote at a referendum called by the local government for November 7 and designed to pre-empt London and Madrid's plans for the strategically located territory on the south coast of Spain. Scores of demonstrators wrapped themselves in the British flag, while others carried placards reading “No to joint sovereignty” and “No surrender - Gibraltar is ours”. The demonstration, led by Caruana to celebrate the colony's National Day, was aimed at convincing Britain and Spain to respect Gibraltarians' overwhelming desire to remain British citizens. “We do not want our sovereignty diluted by having it shared with Spain or anybody else,” Caruana told a cheering crowd, saying that Gibraltar would not be bullied or bribed into being Spanish. Britain has said it will not alter Gibraltar's status against the wishes of its inhabitants, but it has also warned it will not recognise the November 7 referendum because it was not called by London. Spain ceded Gibraltar to Britain under the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht but has been attempting to recover it ever since, launching a series of failed military attacks in the 18th century.