French fisherman warns of 'never-ending war' with Jersey
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French fishermen say new conditions on licenses, implemented following the UK’s departure from the EU, were imposed on April 30 without any discussion with French officials. The new conditions caused around 50 French boats to converge on Jersey’s harbour at Saint Helier, prompting Britain to dispatch two Navy vessels in case of a blockade last week.
However, Island authorities said they would suspend implementation of the new access rules until July 1st allowing negotiations to open with Paris.
Ahead of the talks, Ian Gorst, Jersey’s External Affairs Minister said: “Jersey wishes to find a solution, but we remain firm on our wish to remain master of our waters.”
He reaffirmed the suspension was a “mark of confidence that we give” to France and its fishermen.
But Bertrand Sorre, French MP for Manche in Normandy, said: “The technical limitations and measures imposed on our fishermen by Jersey and the United Kingdom are suspended until 1st July to allow negotiations to continue.
“This period [of negotiations] must be used to obtain a definitive victory and allow the fishermen to continue their historical activity in the waters of the Channel Islands.”
London and Paris officials have previously clashed over French claims that fishermen are being prevented from operating elsewhere in British waters because of difficulties in obtaining licences.
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