independent– France has detained a British trawler fishing in waters off its coast, amid an escalating dispute over fishing rights.
Two English ships were fined during checks off Le Havre, a port in France’s Normandy region, French maritime minister Annick Girardin said in a tweet on Thursday.
“This Wednesday, two English ships were fined during classic checks off Le Havre. The first did not comply spontaneously: verbalisation. The second did not have a licence to fish in our waters: diverted to the quay and handed over to the judicial authority,” the tweet said.
Multiple checks on fishing vessels off Le Havre were conducted overnight by French maritime gendarmes, according to the French maritime ministry.
This is the latest incident in a feud between Britain and France over fishing rights post Brexit.
France is angry with the UK as it has not granted its fishermen the full number of licenses to operate inside British waters. The country said it would impose retaliatory measures that could come into effect from 2 November if there is no progress in talks between the countries.
France said it would bar British fishing boats from some French ports starting next week if there is no deal.
The country suggested it could restrict energy supplies to the Channel Islands as well, reported the Associated Press.
France could also increase customs checks for goods that enter Europe through its borders and stop British fishing boats from unloading in its ports, according to the French government.
French officials have said that Britain has failed to honour its word over fishing since Brexit, reported Reuters. Another contention is Britain’s demand to renegotiate the Northern Ireland protocol that aims to maintain the integrity of the European Union (EU) single market.
Britain, on the other hand, said it has issued fishing licenses to vessels with a track record of operating in its waters in the years up to its withdrawal from the EU on 31 January 2020.