Two British naval ships are sent to Jersey after France threatens to cut off power on the island. The background is the dispute over fishing rights after Brexit.
The autonomous British island of Jersey is located in the English Channel, some distance from the northwest coast of France.
There, two naval patrol boats will “monitor the situation”. This came after French law minister Ann Anne Girardin on Wednesday threatened to retaliate after the United Kingdom introduced new fishing regulations.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson spoke with Jersey Prime Minister John Le Fonder and Foreign Minister Ian Gorst and promised full support for the island. He criticized France for exaggerated threats.
Both France and the United Kingdom are members of the NATO Defense Alliance.
– Completely unacceptable
New British regulations ban French fishermen who want to operate near the islands in the English Channel.
“This is completely unacceptable,” Girardin told the French National Assembly on Tuesday.
He assured that the French government was ready to retaliate against the change in British rule. According to Girardin, the situation could result for power cables from France to the autonomous British Isles.
Jersey is located in the southern part of the English Channel, about 25 kilometers from France. 95 percent of the island’s electricity comes from France via three cables, According to the BBC.
Brexit’s wake up
France believes that any new British regulations should be announced to the European Commission, in line with the Brexit Agreement between the United Kingdom and the European Union.
It should not have happened. Before the weekend, the British introduced new rules relating to licenses for fishermen who are allowed to operate outside the Channel Islands. In practice, restrictions are placed on where fishing vessels may reside and what types of equipment may be used.
Fishing was one of the most difficult topics in the negotiations on the Brexit Agreement. In the Franco-British fishing dispute, temperatures have risen slowly in recent weeks.
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