21:34 GMT12 June 2021
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    France previously stated that it would not make any concessions to the United Kingdom in the post-Brexit controversy over fishing rights.

    The Generation Frexit campaign group took to Twitter to respond to the recent standoff between protesting French fishing vessels and Royal Navy patrol ships.

    “This is what the EU negotiations lead to: more tensions between states and poverty for French fishermen,” the movement said.

    “The EU is once again showing that it is incapable of protecting us and reaching meaningful agreements.”

    The group urged Paris to “regain control” of diplomacy and renegotiate an agreement that allows French fishermen to make “a decent living from their work”.

    Tensions had flared after France accused the Channel Island of Jersey, a British Crown Dependency, of restricting licences for small boats to operate within 12 miles of its shores, in a breach of the Brexit agreement.

    As a result, a flotilla of over 60 small Normandy vessels massed off Jersey on Thursday, while the UK deployed two Royal Navy vessels to the area as a “precautionary measure”. French authorities then dispatched two naval patrol ships to the area.

    The maritime incident was defused, although a French vessel rammed into a British boat during the protest, there were no reports of any serious damage.

    The tense situation was caused by the new technicalities associated with the granting of licenses to French vessels operating in Jersey's coastal waters.

    The French fishermen have been struggling to obtain licenses, allowing them to keep working in UK waters, including in Jersey, as they must now prove they have been fishing in these waters from 2012 to 2016 using GPS data, which some simply don’t have, especially given the fact that many smaller boats don’t carry the positioning equipment.

    France’s minister for maritime affairs, Annick Girardin, earlier warned that the Crown dependency’s electricity supply, predominantly delivered by three underwater cables from France, could be cut off as a retaliatory measure. Downing Street denounced the threats against Jersey were “unacceptable and disproportionate”.

    Tags:
    trade row, fishing, France, UK
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