France and Great Britain send naval ships to Jersey
In a dispute over fishing licenses, electricity supplier France threatened to cut off the power supply of the British crown-occupied Jersey off its coast. Naval ships are now patrolling the island on both sides.
NAfter Brexit, the dispute over fishing rights escalated between the French and the British: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Thursday ordered the sending of two warships to the sea area on the island of Jersey, the English Channel. London reacted to an imminent harbor blockade by around 50 French fishing boats. For its part, France sent two naval patrol ships.
The island of Jersey is located about 30 kilometers from the French coast, and its water is particularly rich in fish. According to British information, the gunships “HMS Severn” and “HMS Tamar” arrived there to “monitor the situation”. It is a “purely preventive measure,” the Ministry of Defense in London said. Prime Minister Johnson has previously described the actions of French fishermen as “completely inappropriate”.
French European Minister Clement Beyoun told AFP news agency that his country was “not intimidated”. Beaune called it “a quick and complete application of the agreement” for Brexit. France’s sea minister, Enique Girardin, had already threatened that he had taken “vengeance” if London continued to hold fishing rights in its waters.
“We have the means,” added Girardin with a view of possible vengeance. In this context, she is shutting down the power supply in the game. “We would be very sorry if we had to go that far”, but they would “do it if we have to.” Otherwise, one risked access to the sea in other places as well.
According to Paris, London would allow only about 40 French ships to land from Jersey. Accordingly, more than 340 boats were applied for. The fishing rights were one of the sticking points in the trade agreement between the European Union and the UK, which has been fully in force since 1 May.
Jersey is only a few kilometers from the French coast, but occupies a British crown with its own administration. The island receives most of its power supply from France via underseat cable.
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