Le grand surrender! Macron BACKS DOWN from midnight deadline he imposed just hours earlier for retaliating against UK over fishing rights row – saying talks would continue on Tuesday

  • The French president has stated that he will not retaliate at midnight against Britain.
  • Instead, he chose to continue negotiations with Britain and will “continue tomorrow”.
  • Macron had previously promised to take retaliatory steps against Britain for fishing 
  • Downing Street is preparing to take action against France.
  • It is a good sign that Macron and Boris Johnson are collaborating in the COP26 Climate Change Conference in Glasgow this Week 

Emmanuel Macron, French President, has rescinded from his midnight deadline for retaliation to the UK over the row about post-Brexit fishing rights.  

Macron today said that he will not take any retaliatory steps against Britain over its fishing rights. This was a statement that came hours after he had said that he would implement them at midnight. Instead, Macron said that he would resume talks on Tuesday.

He stated that discussions between France, the UK, and the European Commission will continue tomorrow, ruling out any retaliation towards Britain, as ‘it’s still not while we negotiate that we’re going impose sanctions.

It’s a great coincidence that Macron and Boris Johnson are both participating in the COP26 conference on climate change in Glasgow. 

Meanwhile, Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said yesterday that the government is prepared to launch action of its own against France should Macron go ahead with the threat.  

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson (L), UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres (R) and French President Emmanuel Macron talk at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, Britain, November 1, 2021

Boris Johnson (British Prime Minister), UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Emmanuel Macron (France President) speak at the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, Scotland (Britain), November 1, 2021

A British trawler Cornelis Gert Jan is seen moored in the port of Le Havre, after France seized on Thursday a British trawler fishing in its territorial waters without a licence, in Le Havre, France, October 29, 2021

After France took a British trawler Cornelis Get Jan fishing in its territorial waters, it was seen moored at Le Havre. This happened after France took the vessel on Thursday, October 29, 2021.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss (pictured at COP today) rejected the deadline set by the French president of tomorrow for more small boats to be granted licences for UK waters and said Britain is prepared to launch action of its own against France

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss (pictured today at COP) has rejected the deadline set tomorrow by the French president for small boats to be licensed in UK waters. She said Britain is ready to take action against France

Yesterday, France claimed that Britain is not honoring a post Brexit deal on access to British fishing grounds. It would retaliate starting at midnight (2300 GMT) Monday by increasing checks on trucks coming in from Britain and banning British trawlers docking in French ports.

The UK insists that it will only grant licenses to boats that meet the criteria in the Brexit agreement.

However, Macron has reacted to the threat today: ‘Since today afternoon, discussions on the basis a proposal I made Prime Minister (Boris) Johnson have resumed. 

“The talks must continue. We’ll check tomorrow to see if the situation has changed. Macron spoke at the United Nations climate conference, Glasgow.

Emmanuel Macron and Boris Johnson briefly met today as the French president arrived at Glasgow for the COP26 Climate Summit. Meanwhile, officials from both countries were participating in ongoing talks in Brussels by the European Commission. 

Downing Street stated previously that it had ‘robust contingency plans’ in place in case Macron decided to take retaliatory steps.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said that the UK would pursue legal action under the UK EU Brexit trade agreement, while a tit for tat retaliation against French action has not been ruled.

Truss stated that the threats made by France to the EU and France were completely unwarranted. We have allocated fishing licenses in accordance with the EU trade agreement. The French must withdraw these threats.

“Otherwise we will resort to the EU dispute resolution mechanism to take action.”

She continued, “We are simply not going over the top in the face these threats.”

The UK granted licences to 98% EU vessels who requested permission to operate within British waters.

But the dispute centres on access for small boats, under 12-metres, wishing to fish in the UK six-to-12-nautical-mile zone.

Paris’s government was upset that the UK initially granted only 12 licenses out of 47 bids to smaller vessels. This number has now risen up to 18.

Only boats that can prove they have fished in UK waters during one day in each year between 2012 and 2016 are eligible to apply for a licence.