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EU member states to issue joint warning to UK over reduced fishing rights

EU member states to issue joint warning to UK over reduced fishing rights

BrexitEU member states to issue joint warning to UK over reduced fishing rightsFourteen countries likely to take tough stance in future talks about fisheries if access to UK waters does not improve Daniel Boffey in Brussels and Lisa O’Carroll in DublinMon 11 Oct 2021 13.38 EDTLast modified on Mon 11 Oct 2021 17.49 EDTFourteen EU member states are preparing to issue a joint declaration accusing the British government of risking “significant economic and social damage” to their fishing communities, as wider relations appear close to breaking point.In the statement, seen by the Guardian, France, Belgium, Ireland, Spain, the Netherlands, Germany, Cyprus, Portugal, Denmark, Italy, Lithuania, Sweden, Malta and Latvia will call for the UK to act “in the spirit and the letter” of the Brexit deal struck last Christmas Eve.The governments of the UK and Jersey, a British crown dependency, have infuriated the French government in recent weeks over the reduced numbers of licences given out to small boat owners who fish in coastal waters. In a pointed sign of solidarity, the member states will make a thinly veiled threat about the likely impact on future EU-UK fisheries negotiations if the UK does not rethink its stance.The development comes at a febrile time in the EU-UK relationship, as Maroš Šefčovič, the European Commissioner responsible for Brexit, prepares to table proposals on improving the post-Brexit arrangements for Northern Ireland.Ireland’s foreign minister, Simon Coveney, warned on Monday that the EU was close to …