HOLIDAYMAKERS going between Gibraltar and Spain have beenwarned over shock new passport checks reportedly causing huge delays as a diplomatic row erupted.

Gibraltar has warned it will enforce tight passport checks after it accused Spanish authorities of introducing strict security measures "without warning."

In a statement released on Friday, Gibraltar officials said Spanish border authorities had “without prior warning, initiated a new passport control regime."

The statement from the British territory reads: "The new practice entails the scanning of a significant number of passports, including those held by Gibraltar resident red card holders and even of some Spanish nationals. 

"Reports suggest that some ID cards are also being scanned.

"This, together with higher numbers of people crossing the border at the height of the summer tourist season, has caused lengthy queues and considerable inconvenience to thousands of people coming into Gibraltar, the vast majority of whom are actually Spanish."

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And The Rock vowed to respond and ramp up checks of workers' passports and IDs at the border if an explanation is not given.

The statement adds: "This means that cross-frontier workers who are not covered by the Withdrawal Agreement should ensure they have valid travel documents available for inspection on entry into Gibraltar.

"Those who are covered by the Withdrawal Agreement will have to demonstrate this through the daily provision of valid travel and identity documents also."

But Madrid claims the accusation is invalid and checking procedures remain in place as usual.

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A spokesman for Spain’s interior ministry told The Telegraph: “There has been no change or alteration in the rules or procedures that underpin the checking of documents to enter or leave Spain.”

It comes earlier this week a woman travelling to Spain was banned from her flight because of an easy passport mistake after she accidentally let it expire.

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