A senior civil servant has admitted that jurisdiction over the UK’s fishing waters could be sacrificed as part of the agreement with the EU.
Both fisheries minister Michael Gove and Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson have launched official protestations against the move, but Westminster flunkey Nigel Gooding confirmed that all EU law, including the Common Fisheries Policy, would continue during the implementation period, meaning foreign trawlers could continue to hoover up our fish.
Fishing for Leave was outraged. In a statement its spokesman said: “It will be an irrevocable surrender of Britain’s fishing for a second time and it would squander one golden legal opportunity provided by Article 50 which gives a clean slate with the ‘treaties ceasing to apply’ as the EU agreed to.”
The group cite the legal fact that at 11pm on the 29th March 2019 the CFP and all its rights and obligations would cease to apply to the UK and that the UK would revert to international law giving complete control over all waters and resources. They say that all the government had to do was cross its arms and say No! but instead will agree to replicate current shares and access as part of obeying ALL EU law after the UK officially leaves the EU as part of a new transition deal and treaty.
Fishing for Leave describe the move as “a pitiful, disgusting, abject surrender and capitulation to EU demands on an ‘acid test’ against the biggest democratic mandate in British history by 17.5 million people the europhilia in the Conservative party and the effete, supine civil service means they will capitulate to the EU and throw coastal communities to the wolves”.
The group accepts that although the UK will technically “take back control as an independent coastal state” it will hand everything straight back to the EU on a plate. Leading politicians such as Jacob Rees-Mogg say this will make the UK a mere vassal state as the EU could then claim continuity and continuation of rights under the Article 70 and Article 30 of the Vienna Convention of Treaties.
Alan Hastings, the group’s spokesman said: “The grave consequence is two-fold. Firstly, we will never escape but will be enmeshed in the CFP forever, and secondly, the EU can take us to the cleaners by enforcing detrimental legislation to eradicate what’s left of the British fleet and then use international fisheries law, under UNCLOS Article 62.2, to claim the ‘surplus’ resources we would no longer have the fleet capacity to catch.”
Fishing for Leave say being trapped obeying the CFP with no veto or say would allow the EU to abolish the 12mile limit which protects our inshore and shell-fishermen, overturning relative stability shares.
The group highlights the most severe ramification, which is the UK fleet being stuck with the EU quota system that forces fishermen to discard species they have no quota for as they try to search for what they are allowed to keep.
Alan Hastings explained: “Without addressing the cause of discards – quotas – the ill-founded discard ban means fishermen must stop fishing when they exhaust their smallest quota – a choke species – regardless of any other species they still have quota to catch.
“Studies by public body Seafish have estimated this would mean approximately 60% of the UK’s resources would go uncaught with a similar proportion of the fleet forced out and bankrupted.
“Brexit would allow the industry to dodge this bullet with independent UK policy but now the EU can use the discard ban as a guise to bankrupt what’s left of the British industry and use international law to claim all the resources that we wouldn’t be able to catch.”
Alan added: “The government knows full well and has been well briefed on the dire ramifications of this move but this abject, limp betrayal means we are staring down the barrel of a gun when a good clean Brexit would be a salvation.
“All the histrionics of ‘leaving the CFP’ and ‘taking back control’ have been nothing but playing semantics as a smoke screen of rhetoric to beguile people whilst omitting that our control will be very limited whilst trapped in a transition.
“Now we know why the government has continually reverted to a default answer rather than clearly stating in unequivocal terms not that we ‘leave the CFP’ but that there will be no continuation of it post 2019.
“This cynicism has now been exposed as a PR exercise playing on words with the reality being that they are prepared to spit in the face of what folk voted for and toss many good MPs, who are genuinely behind the democratic decision and their coastal communities.”
Fishing for Leave asks our industry and the public to rally to save Brexit and the industry by helping to keep unrelenting pressure to bolster MPs so they avert this surrender.
“The Conservatives were given one chance to redeem themselves with Brexit, yet they are inches away from failure and consigning another British industry to museum and memory, despite it being an ‘acid test’,” he said.
“Failure by the government or MPs to execute a hand-brake turn will deservedly see the Conservatives eradicated and consigned to museum and memory in many coastal constituencies.”