June Mummery slams ‘diabolical’ fishing deal with EU
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Ms Mummery, a former Brexit Party MEP, responded to Lord Frost in relation to suggestions by the French Government that French President Emmanuel Macron was ready to introduce a series of punitive measures to punish the UK for its refusal to grant enough licences to French fishermen operating in UK waters. Options include increasing the price of electricity to the Channel Island of Jersey, and tariffs on UK exports to France.
Additionally, French authorities today detained a British trawler off its coast.
Mr Frost tweeted: “It is very disappointing that France has felt it necessary to make threats late this evening against the UK fishing industry and seemingly traders more broadly.
“We set out our position earlier this evening.
“As we have had no formal communication from the French Government on this matter we will be seeking urgent clarification of their plans.
“We will consider what further action is necessary in that light.”
However, his comments cut little ice with Ms Mummery, a tireless campaigner for the rights of UK fishermen who believes Boris Johnson’s trade deal with the EU has failed to live up to his pledge to “take back control” of Britain’s waters.
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Disappointing? I tell you what disappointment is. Our Government selling out the UK fishing Industry
She posted: “Disappointing? I tell you what disappointment is.
“Our Government selling out the UK fishing Industry.
“Sacrificing our coastal communities opportunities and aspirations.
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“Please don’t back down to the French, this would be insult to injury to our fisherman and seaside towns.”
The Government has confirmed it is “urgently” investigating the trawler’s apparent detention.
French authorities have said the UK’s failure to comply with trade agreements is “unacceptable” and they will defend the rights of their own fishermen.
The latest development comes after two boats were fined on Wednesday when one failed to comply with checks by police and the other was found not to hold a proper licence.
A statement from the French maritime ministry said checks had been carried out on the boats in the Baie de Seine, near Le Havre, in the north of the country.
One trawler was fined for obstructing checks after it initially refused a request to be boarded by police, the statement said.
A UK Government spokesman said: “We are aware of reports of enforcement activity being undertaken by the French authorities and are looking into the matter urgently.”
As tensions continue to escalate, France’s Europe minister threatened to block British boats from French ports and tighten checks further.
Clement Beaune, a close ally of France’s President Emmanuel Macron, told French TV news channel CNews: “We have been extremely patient. Our fishermen have been extremely responsible.
“And so, from November 2, it’s over: we will engage in dialogue if the British want to, but we are taking retaliatory measures.
“Now we need to speak the language of force because, unfortunately, that seems to be the only thing this British Government understands.”
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