Zemmour Accuses Macron of Manipulating Fishing Spat With UK as 'Revenge for Brexit'

© REUTERS / POOLFrench President Emmanuel Macron delivers his speech at the Quai Branly museum in Paris, France, October 27, 2021.
French President Emmanuel Macron delivers his speech at the Quai Branly museum in Paris, France, October 27, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.11.2021
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Earlier, France decided to hold off on its threats to punish the United Kingdom over the fishing permits spat that has soured relations between the countries post-Brexit. After talks between French European Affairs Minister Clement Beaune and British Brexit Minister David Frost in Paris on Thursday, London and Paris agreed to continue the dialogue.
Emmanuel Macron has been accused by his political rival of cleverly manipulating the post-Brexit fishing row with the UK to take revenge on the country for exiting the EU bloc on 31 January 2020.
© REUTERS / ERIC GAILLARDFrench right-wing commentator Eric Zemmour attends a meeting for the promotion of his new book "La France n'a pas dit son dernier mot" (France has not yet said its last word) in Beziers, France, October 16, 2021.
French right-wing commentator Eric Zemmour attends a meeting for the promotion of his new book La France n'a pas dit son dernier mot (France has not yet said its last word) in Beziers, France, October 16, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.11.2021
French right-wing commentator Eric Zemmour attends a meeting for the promotion of his new book "La France n'a pas dit son dernier mot" (France has not yet said its last word) in Beziers, France, October 16, 2021.
Eric Zemmour, a right-wing journalist known for his controversial statements on everything ranging from the plight of Jews during WWII to today’s influx of migrants and “anti-racism and LGBT ideologies", was cited by The Sun as urging the French President to cease his bullying threats.
“The fishing problem should involve negotiations between friends. The French should stop saying the British should pay because they left the EU. And the British should stop saying the French are worthless and we should get rid of them. There should be room for friendly negotiations,” the right-wing pundit and possible French presidential candidate Eric Zemmour was quoted as saying.
Under the Brexit trade deal between the EU and UK, it was agreed that licences would be issued to boats if they can prove they have fished in each other's waters for years. However, there have been disagreements about how much evidence is required.
© AP Photo / Gareth FullerA fishing boat at work in the English Channel, off the southern coast of England, Saturday Feb. 1, 2020
A fishing boat at work in the English Channel, off the southern coast of England, Saturday Feb. 1, 2020 - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.11.2021
A fishing boat at work in the English Channel, off the southern coast of England, Saturday Feb. 1, 2020
Weighing in on the recent barrage of intimidation lobbed by Paris, such as holding up UK imports and cutting supplies to the Channel Islands, Zemmour, who is yet to officially declare he will run in the presidential race next April, said: “I don’t like the mindset of wanting to constantly make the English pay so as to show the other EU states that they should not leave EU. This is a pathetic mindset.”
© AFP 2022 / SAMEER AL-DOUMYFrench fishing boats leave the Jersey waters following their protest in front of the port of Saint Helier off the British island of Jersey to draw attention to what they see as unfair restrictions on their ability to fish in UK waters after Brexit, on May 6, 2021.
French fishing boats leave the Jersey waters following their protest in front of the port of Saint Helier off the British island of Jersey to draw attention to what they see as unfair restrictions on their ability to fish in UK waters after Brexit, on May 6, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 07.11.2021
French fishing boats leave the Jersey waters following their protest in front of the port of Saint Helier off the British island of Jersey to draw attention to what they see as unfair restrictions on their ability to fish in UK waters after Brexit, on May 6, 2021.
Tensions flared last month after the UK and Crown Dependency Jersey denied post-Brexit fishing permits to several French boats. An irate France threatened a series of measures against the UK unless more licences were granted by 2 November, such as imposing extra customs checks and banning British fishing boats at some French ports.
President Emmanuel Macron suspended the threats at the last moment ahead of more talks between the sides. On 5 November European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic and UK Brexit Minister David Frost met in Brussels to discuss the other contentious issue – that of the so-called Northern Ireland protocol.
They also touched upon the French-UK row over fishing permits, reported UK media. Frost was cited as reiterating that French vessels must provide evidence of previous fishing in the UK and Jersey waters in order to receive a license. Sefcovic was cited as emphasising that the Brexit Trade and Cooperation Agreement was “clear” on the issue.
“Vessels that are fishing in the territorial waters of the U.K. and Crown Dependencies should be allowed to continue. All vessels entitled to a license should receive one,” he said.
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