France Could Retaliate Against the U.K. Over Fishing Next Week
(Bloomberg) -- France said it could take action against the U.K. at the end of next week if the government in London still refuses to comply with its Brexit commitments on fishing.
“We are looking at what type of measures could be implemented should we see a clear and obvious willingness to breach the accord,” French government spokesman Gabriel Attal said on Wednesday. “These measures could be announced, activated, at the end of next week.”
Fishing rights emerged as a flashpoint in the fraught relationship between Paris and London, with France saying Britain has been slow in granting licenses to French fishermen who have historically fished in U.K. waters. European Union leaders are set to discuss the British position during a meeting in Brussels next Thursday, and France has already secured the backing of Germany and nine other EU member states.
Attal called the U.K.’s attitude “unacceptable,” and said that France and French fishermen have always provided all the documents requested by U.K. authorities.
Bilateral retaliatory measures from France could include preventing British fishermen from unloading their catch in French ports or increasing prices to export French energy to the U.K. The implementation of an agreement over finance ties has already been stalled.
French Minister of Marine Affairs Annick Girardin will meet with the vice-president of the European Commission and fishing organizations on Friday, Attal said.
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