Impounded British Fishing Trawler Arrives in UK After Being Released by France

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A British trawler which was impounded by France amid the quality implicit post-Brexit sportfishing rights has arrived successful the UK aft being released by French authorities.

The Scottish-registered scallop dredger Cornelis Gert Jan near Le Havre connected Wednesday evening aft being held determination since past week, erstwhile France accused it of sportfishing successful its waters without a due licence.

The blue, achromatic and reddish trawler departed the quayside aft dusk and docked astatine Shoreham-by-Sea, adjacent Brighton, astatine 4.46am connected Thursday, according to MarineTraffic.com.

The nationalist affairs manager of the vessel’s proprietor Macduff Shellfish confirmed it has been released by French authorities.

The ruling came aft the boat’s captain, Jondy Ward, appeared astatine the Court of Appeal successful Rouen earlier connected Wednesday.

Epoch Times Photo Jondy Ward, the skipper of the Cornelis Gert Jan, arrives backmost astatine his vessel connected Nov. 3, 2021. (Andrew Matthews/PA)

Ward explained that French maritime constabulary detained the trawler past week for not being connected a European registry erstwhile it was sportfishing disconnected the Normandy coast.

The skipper said helium did not cognize if it was an mistake connected the portion of UK oregon French officials.

“We had everything successful bid connected the bridge, arsenic acold arsenic I was acrophobic we had everything successful spot to beryllium legal,” helium said.

He said the vessel was “definitely” caught successful the mediate of the Franco-British spat implicit post-Brexit sportfishing arrangements.

The comments were echoed by his lawyer, Mathieu Croix, who told reporters extracurricular the courtroom: “We’re intelligibly caught successful a governmental crippled arsenic determination is simply a full communicative spun astir this full case, whereas successful information it is simply a alternatively mundane matter implicit sportfishing successful an country that is supposedly retired of bounds, and astir licences that whitethorn oregon whitethorn not person been fixed and drawback amounts that are comparatively modest.”

Cross-Channel Talks

It comes arsenic Lord Frost prepares to conscionable France’s Europe curate Clement Beaune successful Paris successful an effort to extremity the situation successful cross-Channel relations.

France has threatened sanctions implicit what it perceives arsenic a refusal to contented licences to its trawlers to run successful UK waters.

The UK Government insisted the overwhelming bulk of applications for licences person been granted.

French president Emmanuel Macron has delayed the imposition of punitive measures portion talks betwixt the UK, France and the European Commission instrumentality place.

But the French authorities has insisted the measures—which could see a prohibition connected British trawlers landing their catches successful French ports and tighter customs checks to hamper cross-Channel trade—remain “on the table” if a woody cannot beryllium reached.

Lord Frost volition travel his talks with  Beaune connected Thursday by heading to Brussels connected Friday to conscionable European Commission vice-president Maros Sefcovic.

‘Respect the Deal’

Government spokesperson Gabriel Attal underlined that the menace of sanctions remained: “We volition spot what comes with those meetings.

“As you know, the power measures that we announced are inactive suspended but each options are connected the array and we whitethorn request to instrumentality those measures if we bash not scope an agreement.”

On Wednesday, helium said: “We are conscionable waiting for 1 thing: for the UK to respect the woody that they signed.”

Under the Brexit deal, European Union boats which tin amusement they person fished successful British waters successful astatine slightest 4 of the years from 2012 to 2016 are eligible for a licence.

Some 1,831 applications for licences person been received, with 1,793 issued.

The main root of contention has been for smaller vessels, the nether 12-metre class sportfishing betwixt six and 12 nautical miles of the coast, wherever 50 applications person been received—all from French vessels—but conscionable 19 person been issued.

The sportfishing enactment is conscionable 1 of the issues Lord Frost volition beryllium raising during his talks successful Paris and Brussels.

The Northern Ireland Protocol

The main quality betwixt the UK and European Union is implicit Northern Ireland’s post-Brexit trading arrangements.

Talks are continuing betwixt the UK and EU implicit the Northern Ireland Protocol, the portion of the Brexit divorcement woody which avoided a hard borderline with Ireland.

The woody efficaciously keeps Northern Ireland wrong the EU’s azygous marketplace for goods, resulting successful immoderate checks for products crossing the Irish Sea from Great Britain, which near the azygous market.

Lord Frost has claimed the conditions for utilizing Article 16 – allowing parts of the woody to beryllium suspended – person been met due to the fact that of the difficulties being caused.

The UK wants an extremity to the European Court of Justice’s oversight role, thing that Brussels has said is impossible.

European Commission enforcement vice-president Frans Timmermans told ITV’s Peston: “I deliberation Mr Frost knows precise good that this is not imaginable for the European Union.

“I cognize helium knows afloat good that whenever the interior marketplace is involved, the eventual arbitrator is the European Court of Justice.”

But helium said the European Commission had been “bending implicit backwards” to scope an statement with the UK connected the protocol.

PA

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