Gibraltar celebrates its National Day

Thousands of Gibraltarians converged on Casemates Square on Saturday to attend a political rally to mark National Day. Against a gigantic sign proclaiming that "Self-determination is democracy", there was a united call for the right to self-determination.
It was a great festive occasion. People dressed in the red and white colours of Gibraltar thronged the city centre, with families, friends and visitors joining in the celebrations. British MPs from the main political parties also attended, and spoke in support of Gibraltar's aspirations.
Simon Hughes, Liberal Democrat, spoke of "the people of the nation of Gibraltar."
Eric Pickles, Conservative deputy chairman, said: "We stand absolutely with you on the question of self-determination."
Lindsay Hoyle, Labour chairman of the all-party Gibraltar Group in parliament, described Gibraltar as a country older than Australia.
The spokesman for the Self-Determination for Gibraltar Group William Serfaty, defended the right of the people to decide "what happens in our country". The UK foreign office had now been cornered to discuss a new constitution for Gibraltar. Earlier, he spoke of the rejection by Gibraltar of Anglo-Spanish joint sovereignty over the Rock. "The future belongs to us," he said.
For the chief minister Peter Caruana, National Day is the day "when we tell the world that Gibraltar is our homeland. This is our small country, our small nation." He spoke of moving towards a non-colonial, modern and British constitutional relationship with Britain.
As many as 30,000 balloons - representing the 30,000 population - were released at the end of the rally, with the Gibraltar anthem in the background.