Smug Beaune twists the knife as he taunts UK over ‘European solidarity’ in Brexit swipe

France fishing row about 'poll pressure' says expert

We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info

The tweet – posted as the French President prepared to deliver his keynote speech at the COP26 environmental summit on Glasgow – made it clear France’s Minister for European Affairs had his mind on more mundane issues, specifically his country’s ongoing dispute with the UK over fishing rights. French officials have warned they will bar UK fishing boats from some ports and tighten customs checks on lorries entering the country unless more licences are granted for their small boats to fish in Britain’s waters.

We defend together the application of signed agreements and European solidarity

Clement Beaune

Mr Beaune said: “Brexit. New exchange this afternoon with my Irish counterpart Thomas Byrne TD.

“We defend together the application of signed agreements and European solidarity, always being united, firm and constructive.”

Mr Byrne, Ireland’s Secretary of State for European Affairs, was rather more circumspect, simply posting: “A good exchange this afternoon with my colleague Clement Beaune.

“Ireland and France remain key partners in the EU.”

French officials have warned they will bar UK fishing boats from some ports and tighten customs checks on lorries entering the country unless more licences are granted for their small boats to fish in Britain’s waters.

Mr Beaune earlier accused Britain of making a “political choice” to bar “more than 40 percent” of French boats from UK and Channel Islands’ waters after rejecting their applications.\

JUST IN: ‘Macron hates Britain’ Widdecombe’s verdict on French President

He insisted the “proportionate and reversible measures” proposed by his country were “fully in line with the TCA”.

Mr Macron on Monday told Mr Johnson the ball was in his court to resolve the fishing row, warning there were less than 24 hours left to find a solution.

After a 30-minute meeting with the Prime Minister at the G20 summit in Rome during which they discussed the situation, Mr Macron said unless Britain made a “significant move”, Paris would introduce more stringent port and border checks from Tuesday.

Mr Macron’s comments are likely to escalate tensions, with fears on the UK side that the row has overshadowed the build-up to COP26.

Mr Johnson has told France he believes its stance against the UK to be in contravention to both the spirit and the letter of the EU–UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) signed in December.

His remarks come after ministers declared they were “actively considering” triggering the disputes mechanism under the terms of the TCA if Paris does not back down.

In a post-G20 press briefing, Mr Macron told reporters: “The ball is now in their court.

“If the British don’t do any significant move, measures starting from November 2 will need to be implemented.

“I would deplore it. But what we cannot do is not respond and not defend our fishermen.”

The Channel dispute has worsened after the leaking of a letter from French prime minister Jean Castex to European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen.

In it, he urged her to demonstrate to the UK that “it causes more damage to leave the EU than to stay in”.

Mr Johnson said he was “puzzled” by the letter when he briefed reporters after the G20 talks.

He told a press conference in Rome: “I must say I was puzzled to read a letter from the French prime minister explicitly asking for Britain to be punished for leaving the EU.

“I just have to say to everybody I don’t believe that that is compatible either with the spirit or the letter of the Withdrawal Agreement or the Trade and Co-operation Agreement.”

Source: Read Full Article