Open let­ter to the Span­ish for­eign min­istry

Costa Blanca News (South Edition) - - Letters To The Editor -

Dear Sirs

My wife and I have been sub­jected to a con­tin­ued and de­lib­er­ate breach of our rights, and a con­certed at­tack on our mar­riage by your peo­ple in the Manila Con­sulate. We have been ac­cused of fal­si­fy­ing doc­u­men­ta­tion and of not hav­ing a gen­uine and sta­ble re­la­tion­ship.

This de­fence has been used in re­sponse to the De­fen­sor del Pue­blo’s rec­om­men­da­tion to you that the re­fusal to is­sue a visa be re­voked as we had proved be­yond doubt that we had a le­gal right for my wife to join me, a Bri­tish na­tional, res­i­dent in Spain.

As you know, we in­sti­gated le­gal pro­ceed­ings against you, and as you ex­plained in your re­ply, the time limit for serv­ing a writ upon you had ex­pired.

This is partly be­cause you took eight months to re­ply to the De­fen­sor del Pue­blo, thereby con­ve­niently us­ing up a good chunk of the per­mis­si­ble time in which suit could be is­sued. It seems strange to me that it is ac­tu­ally MAEC who make the de­ci­sion as to whether a law­suit may be launched against them­selves, but I am re­minded that ‘Spain is dif­fer­ent’

How­ever, in spite of your ob­tuse re­fusal to lis­ten to our case, and in­sis­tence on tak­ing the ‘ex­pert ad­vice’ of the in­com­pe­tent buf­foons in Manila against whom our com­plaint is made, I will try once again to make you see sense.

A wife is a core fam­ily mem­ber. A core fam­ily mem­ber is en­ti­tled to an en­try visa to the EU to join or ac­com­pany her EU fam­ily mem­ber.

In the words of Mr Franco Frat­tini, Vice Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion (2004-2008), “Your spouse en­joys the right granted by the Free­dom of Move­ment Direc­tive (2004/38/EC) when they join or ac­com­pany you and the Mem­ber States have no scope for dis­cre­tion in recog­ni­tion of their rights.”

Re­fusal of a visa can only be made when the ap­pli­cant is a threat to na­tional health or se­cu­rity, or it is prov­able that the mar­riage is false.

It would be bet­ter if your peo­ple in Manila wouldn’t ac­cuse cou­ples of hav­ing a false mar­riage with their only 'proof' be­ing that the ap­pli­cant is un­able to pro­vide sat­is­fac­tory an­swers - be­cause they are ac­tu­ally be­ing in­ter­viewed for the wrong type of visa. A re­uni­fi­ca­tion visa is a dif­fer­ent type of visa, and the visa code pro­hibits con­sular staff from chang­ing the visa ap­pli­ca­tion in this way.

Fur­ther­more, when mak­ing your de­ci­sion re­gard­ing a com­plaint against a con­sulate, per­haps it might be pru­dent to ex­er­cise a lit­tle of your own in­tel­li­gence rather than sim­ply agree­ing with the con­sulate.

Per­haps a lit­tle in­ves­ti­ga­tion of your own might have helped. And per­haps the ben­e­fit of ex­pe­ri­ence might give you a cou­ple of clues.

Please cor­rect me if I'm wrong, but I imag­ine that those in­dulging in mar­riages of con­ve­nience would not (as we did) make three sep­a­rate ap­pli­ca­tions and two ap­peals. Then raise their com­plaint (re­gard­ing re­fusal to hon­our rights and to is­sue a visa) to YourEurope.Org, SOLVIT, the De­fen­sor Del Pue­blo, the Bri­tish Am­bas­sador, the Span­ish For­eign Min­is­ter, Cit­i­zens Ad­vice Bu­reau, MAEC, the FCO, the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion and then at­tempt to is­sue a writ against the con­sulate.

Please cor­rect me if I'm wrong, but when SOLVIT, the De­fen­sor Del Pue­blo and the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion agree with us, per­haps it might dawn upon you that your con­sulate did make a mis­take. Per­haps you should look into what hap­pened, rather than hide be­hind a le­gal time limit and then ig­nore it. But Spain is dif­fer­ent, and ob­tuse­ness abounds. Your con­sulate got it wrong. Your con­sulate made a mis­take and then made a shoddy at­tempt to cover it up. Your con­sulate got in­volved in a per­sonal vendetta against peo­ple that they were obliged to as­sist. Your con­sulate used a law that does not even ap­ply to mar­ried cou­ples in at­tempt to deny them their rights. Your con­sulate charged money for a visa ap­pli­ca­tion which must be is­sued free of charge. Your con­sulate made false ac­cu­sa­tions and then ig­nored our re­ply and have ob­structed ev­ery at­tempt to chal­lenge their in­com­pe­tence.

Your con­sulate is cor­rupt, ig­no­rant of the law, staffed by big­ots and brings shame onto Spain.

Of course, if I’m wrong in mak­ing my ac­cu­sa­tions, you may your­self wish to take le­gal pro­ceed­ings against me. In fact, I would wel­come such ac­tion be­cause I know that the

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