Brexit: George Eustice grilled over French fishing licences
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Nikolas Busse, responsible for foreign policy, took aim at the UK in an article for the Frankfurter Allgemeine newspaper. Mr Busse used his piece to criticise the promises given during the Brexit campaign, suggesting Brexit voters were promised “paradise on earth”.
He wrote: “The ‘trouble’ now came from France, but the case shows, above all, that Brexit, like any nationalist project, almost inevitably leads to conflicts with other states.
“The ordinary citizens, to whom the Brexiteers had promised paradise on earth, have none of it, especially not the fishermen.
“Johnson’s ‘Global Britain’ fought its first battles not with submarines in the Indo-Pacific, but with fishing boats in the English Channel.”
Tensions have skyrocketed between France and the UK today.
After a trawler owned by Macduff Shellfish of Scotland was seized in France, as well as another being fined following checks off Le Havre on Tuesday, a stark warning was sent by a Government Minister to France.
Environment Secretary George Eustice said: “We don’t know what they’ll do, they said they wouldn’t introduce these measures until Tuesday probably at the earliest so we will see what they do.
“But if they do bring these into place, well, two can play at that game and we reserve the ability to respond in a proportionate way.”
As well as tensions over fishing, there have also been disputes between the UK and the EU over the Northern Ireland Protocol.
Former MEP Ben Habib has said that not enough is being done by the UK to deal with this argument between the countries.
Speaking to Express.co.uk, Mr Habib said: “It is time to face up to the French.
“They cannot be allowed to impound our boats and get away with it.
Lord Frost expressing disappointment and thinking their action is disproportionate “is itself disappointing and inadequate”, stressed Mr Habib.
He added: “But that should not be a surprise. Lord Frost is Lord Timid.
“He seems unable firmly to stand up for British interests.
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“Had he stood up to the French last year and refused to allow them unfettered access to our territorial waters, as the Prime Minister had repeatedly promised, this dispute simply would not have arisen.”
Mr Habib warned: “The French now behave as if our waters are theirs.
“Indeed, suggesting the French action is disproportionate implies that we have done some wrong.
“It is France that is guilty of breaking international law, not the United Kingdom.
“Expressing British disquiet meekly as if over a cup of tea with cucumber sandwiches will have nil impact across the Channel.
“The French will not take a blind bit of notice of us unless and until we stand up for ourselves.
“All French fishing boats should be banned from British waters. That ought to do it.”
Additional reporting by Monika Pallenberg
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