Prime Minister Boris Johnson acknowledged the “turbulence” in the UK’s relations with France as the controversy over fishing rights intensifies.
After dozens of French boats were denied post-Brexit fishing licenses for UK and Jersey waters, France threatened to block ports for British vessels.
But Johnson told the BBC that the things that united the UK and France were more important than their divisions.
The French president said the dispute was a test of the UK’s global credibility.
France said it will take “targeted measures” against the UK if the fishing license dispute is not resolved by Tuesday.
Pressed about how the UK would respond to the threats, the prime minister told the BBC: “We will move forward and do the things that matter to both of us and make sure we work together to tackle the big problems facing the world.”
He said “there is some turbulence in the relationship”, referring to a letter seen by the BBC in which French Prime Minister Jean Castex said that the EU must prove in this controversy that there has been “more harm to leave. ‘EU than to stay there “.
- What are the rules on fishing after Brexit?
- Who Really Owns the Fishing Rights in the UK?
“If one of our partners decides to violate the trade and cooperation agreement we have reached, it is a matter that we must pursue,” Johnson said.
The UK government suggested on Friday that measures threatened by France – such as blocking ports on UK boats, increasing controls on UK goods, boats and trucks and even cutting energy supplies – would be a violation of the post-Brexit trade agreement with the EU.
The prime minister also suggested that the UK is concerned that France may be “already in violation” of the agreement.
But when asked whether he found French behavior unacceptable, Johnson told the BBC that the priority for the UK and France was making progress in tackling climate change in talks at the G20 summit in Rome this weekend and COP26 in Glasgow.
Speaking from the Colosseum in Rome, he called for the collapse of the Roman Empire saying that the world was “absolutely conniving in our decline and fall”.
“What we want to do is get the world to focus on the threat humanity faces,” he said.
What is the fishing line about?
The dispute over fishing rights reignited last month when the UK rejected dozens of requests for French fishing vessels to fish in UK territorial waters after Brexit.
Under the trade agreement, the EU and the UK have agreed to license boats if they can prove they have been fishing in each other’s waters for years.
But there have been disagreements over how much evidence is needed, leading to France’s anger when applications were turned down by the UK and Jersey.
In May, French boats protested outside the port of Jersey and France threatened to cut off the island’s electricity supply for what it called unfair conditions.
- Read more about the post-Brexit fishing rules
On Friday, Environment Secretary George Eustice said the UK could take revenge on French threats, however, saying “two can play that game”.
Jean-Marc Puissesseau, president and president of the ports of Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer, told BBC Radio 4’s Today program that the dispute involved only forty boats, “a drop of water in the ocean”.
He said these boats were unable to prove their fishing history in British waters, as requested by the UK, because they were unable to take part in a monitoring survey or because the fisherman replaced their boats. with newer models.
He said that if the sanctions were imposed by France, “it would be terrible for both sides of the Channel, for you, for us, for the ports, for the fishermen of your country, for the fishermen of our country – and this is only for 40 small boats that cannot fish in your country “.
The UK government’s view is – in private – that this controversy has a lot to do with the fact that France is in a difficult election cycle.
They are not entirely surprised that a lot of political hay is being made on the other side of the Channel.
But this is something that needs to be resolved – and the government is surprised at how far France has moved in this queue, particularly with some of the threats to stop trade across the Channel in the run-up to Christmas.
At the same time, Downing Street doesn’t want to get into a huge argument about this, it doesn’t want to up the ante.
Boris Johnson – who may also see Emmanuel Macron today – will likely go through this very carefully because, as he joked yesterday, the UK – with the Glasgow climate summit coming up – has more fish to fry at the moment.
Meanwhile, French President Emmanuel Macron has accused the UK of backing down on its Brexit commitments on the fishing line and Northern Ireland.
He told the Financial Times raised questions about the UK’s accountability to the EU and all of its partners.
“Because when you spend years negotiating a treaty and then a few months later you do the opposite of what has been decided on the aspects that suit you least, it’s not a great sign of your credibility,” he said.
Macron and Johnson are expected to have an informal meeting on the sidelines of the G20 summit in Rome this weekend.
In addition to increasing the possibility of retaliation, the UK government said it could initiate “dispute resolution procedures” with the EU if France proceeded with “unwarranted” measures.
- DON’T FORGET !: Why do we turn the clock back?
- WHY ARE WE SO OBSESSED WITH THIS ?: The dark days of the European witch craze
- Boris Johnson
- Fish industry
Fishing proves UK credibility – Macron
- 2 hours ago
The Prime Minister fears the violation of the EU-UK trade agreement on the line of fishermen
- 14 hours ago
The UK warns France that it could take revenge in the fishing line
- 18 hours ago
The United Kingdom summons the French ambassador in the middle of the line of fishermen
- 1 day ago
Who Really Owns the Fishing Rights in the UK?
- January 1st
Fishing after Brexit: what rules?
- 22 hours ago
Read More about Politics News here.
This Article is Sourced from BBC News. You can check the original article here: Source