French fishermen threaten to close Channel Tunnel, ports to protest against fishing license


A post on Thursday by a group of fishermen on Facebook said they would block boats in Saint-Malo, Calais and Ouistreham “to condemn the terms of the Brexit deal and its consequences on fishermen”.

The head of a fishermen’s union told CNN that protests would begin at Oistreham at 1 p.m. local time and that 15 boats in the area would block the port. He said other groups would block two other areas.

The fishermen said they were sending out a “warning” to demand the UK’s faster grant of fishing licenses after Brexit.

“We don’t want handouts, we just want our licenses back. The UK must abide by the post-Brexit deal. A lot of fishermen are still in the dark,” declared Gerard Rometty, chairman of the National Committee for Marine Fisheries of, according to CNN affiliate BFMTV.

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The fishermen’s union told an online news conference that a large number of vehicles would be used to block access to the Eurotunnel, which is used to transport goods by rail between Britain and France, according to Reuters.

The UK government responded on Thursday that it was “disappointed” by the threat of protests by French fishermen.

A Downing Street spokesman said: “We look to the French authorities to ensure that there is no illegal action and business is not affected.” “We have licensed approximately 1,700 EU vessels in total; our approach to licensing is reasonable and fully in line with our commitments in the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA).

“We continue to work with the Commission and the French authorities and will consider any evidence provided to support the remaining license applications.”

The protests represent the latest round of tensions in a long-running dispute between Britain and France over the rights of French and British ships to fish in each country’s waters after Brexit.