‘All UK territorial waters should be under our control!’ Boris sent Brexit deal ultimatum

Brexit: Fishing deal slammed by Habib and Mummery

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Former Brexit Party MEP Mr Habib is a fierce critic of the Prime Minister who recently suggested he should resign for failing to deliver on his pledge to get Brexit done. Assessing the latest incident, which saw Mr Johnson send the Royal Navy vessels to Channel islands in response to threats by French fishing boats to blockade the port, Mr Habib said the decision had been a necessary one.

It should never have come to this

Ben Habib

But he suggested the showdown had been entirely avoidable – and said ultimately Mr Johnson bore more of a resemblance to Neville Chamberlain than his hero Winston Churchill.

He told Express.co.uk: “It should never have come to this.

“All our territorial waters should be in our control as the Prime Minister repeatedly said they would be.”

He explained: “Many on our side of the channel do not get fishing.

”They take one look at its contribution to GDP and dismiss it as irrelevant. They are so wrong.

“It is not about GDP. It is about controlling the supply of this phenomenal renewable resource and the livelihoods of the people who rely on mining it.”

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By contrast, Mr Habib said the French emphatically “do get it”.

He added: “That is why they fought tooth and nail to retain access to our waters in the Brexit negotiations.

“These British waters are much richer than their own despite the abuse they have suffered during 47 years of the Common Fisheries Policy.

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“And that is why they have threatened to plunge Jersey into a blackout and even blockade it if the island does not issue sufficient fishing licences.

Referring to remarks by Ian Gorst, is the member of the Jersey government with responsible for handling the situation, Mr Habib said: “Jersey’s External Affairs Minister described the threat as disproportionate.

“On the face of it he appears to be right but he, like so many, does not appreciate the importance of fish. And in that context he is wrong.

“The shame of the situation is that our own government has sold the industry down the drain.

“After all his false promises the Prime Minister gave in to EU pressure.

“To hold firm required a fraction of Churchillian resolve (only a fraction).

“To have given in, as he did, breaking his word into the bargain, he allied himself in history to Chamberlain.”

Fishing – and specifically access to UK waters by EU boats – has been a key issue in the Brexit debate.

In accordance with the trade deal secured by Boris Johnson in December, the EU was permitted to retain 75 percent of the value of the fish it now catches in UK waters, with 25 percent being returned to British fishermen over the transition period.

By 2026, Britain will be able to cut quotas or exclude boats in a zone of 6-12 nautical miles – but in practice, such a move is unlikely, given it would almost certainly trigger retaliatory measures by Brussels which would impact other sectors of the UK economy.

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