clearn.png
Monday November 29th, 2021 7:34AM

Fishing, Northern Ireland: EU, UK back to Brexit wrangling

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

BRUSSELS (AP) — It was late on Christmas Eve last year when the European Union and Britain finally clinched a Brexit trade deal after years of wrangling, threats and missed deadlines to seal their divorce.

There was hope that now-separated Britain and the 27-nation bloc would sail their relationship toward calmer waters.

Don't even think about it.

Such was the bile and bad blood stirred up by the diplomatic brinkmanship and bitter divorce that, two months from another Christmas, insults of treachery and duplicitousness are flying again.

“It was written in the stars from the start,” sighed Professor Hendrik Vos of Ghent University. "There were a lot of loose ends. Several issues that would invariably lead to problems, like fisheries and trade in Northern Ireland.”

It was the economically minute but symbolically charged subject of fish that held up a trade deal to the last minute. And fishing is also providing a wedge of division now.

This week France was rallying its EU partners for a joint stance and action if necessary if London wouldn't grant more licenses for small French fishing boats to roam close to the U.K. crown dependencies of Jersey and Guernsey that hug France's Normandy coast.

In France's parliament last week, Prime Minister Jean Castex accused Britain of reneging on its promise over fishing.

“We see in the clearest way possible that Great Britain does not respect its own signature,” he said, adding that “all we want is that a given word is respected.”

In a relationship where both sides often fall back on cliches about the other, Castex was harking back to the centuries-old French insult of “Perfidious Albion,” a nation that can never be trusted.

His Europe Minister Clement Beaune added to this late Monday. “The European Union scrupulously implements the agreement it reached with the United Kingdom. We expect the same from Britain."

Across the English Channel, Brexit supporters in British politics and the media often depict a conniving EU, deeply hurt by the U.K.'s decision to leave, and doing its utmost to make Brexit less than a success by throwing up bureaucratic impediments.

The schism has crystalized in the worsening fight over Northern Ireland, the only part of the U.K. to share a land border with an EU country. Under the most delicate and contentious part of the Brexit deal, Northern Ireland remains inside the EU's single market for trade in goods, in order to avoid a hard border with EU member Ireland.

That means customs and border checks must be conducted on some goods going to Northern Ireland from the rest of the U.K., despite the fact they are part of the same country.

The regulations are intended to prevent goods from Britain entering the EU’s tariff-free single market while keeping an open border on the island of Ireland — a key pillar of Northern Ireland’s peace process.

The U.K. government soon complained the arrangements weren't working. It said the rules and restrictions impose burdensome red tape on businesses. Never short of a belligerent metaphor, 2021 has already brought a “sausage war,” with Britain asking the EU to drop a ban on processed British meat products such as sausages entering Northern Ireland.

Northern Ireland's British Unionist community, meanwhile, say the Brexit deal undermines the peace process by weakening Northern Ireland’s ties with the rest of the U.K.

Britain accuses the EU of being needlessly “purist” in implementing the agreement, known as the Northern Ireland Protocol, and says it requires major changes to work.

The bloc has agreed to look at changes, and is due to present proposals on Wednesday. Before that move, Britain raised the stakes again, demanding even more sweeping changes to the jointly negotiated deal.

In a speech in the Portuguese capital, Lisbon, on Tuesday, U.K. Brexit minister David Frost will say the EU must also remove the European Court of Justice as the ultimate arbiter of disputes concerning trade in Northern Ireland.

That is a demand the EU is highly unlikely to agree to. The bloc's highest court is seen as the pinnacle of the free trade single market, and Brussels has vowed not to undermine its own order.

“No one should be in any doubt about the seriousness of the situation,” Frost will say in Lisbon, urging the EU to "show ambition and willingness to tackle the fundamental issues at the heart of the Protocol head on.”

Frost plans to say that if there is no resolution soon, the U.K. will invoke a clause that lets either side suspend the agreement in exceptional circumstances.

That would send already testy relations into a deep chill and could lead to a trade war between Britain and the bloc — one that would hurt the U.K. economy more than its much larger neighbor.

Some EU observers say Britain's demand to remove the court's oversight shows it isn't serious about making the Brexit deal work.

Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney accused Britain of “shifting the playing field” and dismissing EU proposals without seeing them.

“This is being seen across the European Union as the same pattern over and over again — the EU tries to solve problems, the U.K. dismisses the solutions before they’re even published and asks for more,” Coveney said.

___

Jill Lawless reported from London.

___

Follow AP's coverage of post-Brexit developments at https://apnews.com/hub/Brexit

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP World News, AP Business, AP Business - Economy
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Fishing, Northern Ireland: EU, UK back to Brexit wrangling
The European Union and Britain are back to quarreling less than a year after finalizing Brexit
2:51AM ( 12 minutes ago )
LEADING OFF: Braves make their pitch to close out Brewers
Boosted by a sharp start from Ian Anderson, Braves pitchers have now thrown 19 straight scoreless innings against Milwaukee in the NL Division Series
2:33AM ( 31 minutes ago )
Christmas comes early: EU, UK back to Brexit wrangling
The European Union and Britain are back to quarreling less than a year after finalizing Brexit
2:19AM ( 44 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Risky move: Biden undercuts WH executive privilege shield
President Joe Biden has agreed to a request from Congress seeking sensitive information on the actions of Republican Donald Trump and his aides during the Jan. 6 insurrection — though the former president claims the information is guarded by executive privilege
12:58AM ( 2 hours ago )
Plane crash kills 2, burns homes in California neighborhood
Recordings show a twin-engine plane that killed at least two people and left a swath of destruction in a San Diego suburb nose-dived into the ground after repeated warnings that it was flying dangerously low
12:52AM ( 2 hours ago )
Walk it off: Red Sox eliminate Rays 6-5 with late sac fly
Kiké Hernandez delivered Boston’s second straight walk-off win, scoring pinch-runner Danny Santana with a sacrifice fly in the ninth inning to send the Red Sox to the AL Championship Series with a 6-5 win over the Tampa Bay Rays
12:48AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP National News
Justice Department again presses to halt Texas abortion law
The Biden administration is again urging courts to step in and suspend a new Texas law that has banned most abortions in the state since early September
11:56PM ( 3 hours ago )
Texas governor orders ban on private company vaccine mandate
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order Monday to prohibit any entity, including private business, from enforcing a COVID-19 vaccine mandate on workers and called on state lawmakers to pass a similar ban into law
11:17PM ( 3 hours ago )
At least 2 dead in California plane crash that torched homes
Authorities say at least two people were killed and two others injured when a small plane nosedived into a suburban San Diego neighborhood, destroying two homes and a delivery truck
10:51PM ( 4 hours ago )
Top General short headlines
Activists seek legal marijuana in former hippie haven Nepal
Widely available marijuana once drew thousands of hippies to Nepal, where its use was not only accepted but embedded in both the culture and religion
12:05AM ( 2 hours ago )
Bus plunge, floods leave at least 28 dead in northern China
Chinese authorities have confirmed 13 people died after a bus plunged into a rushing river amid heavy flooding that has caused 15 other fatalities
11:45PM ( 3 hours ago )
Report concludes UK waited too long for virus lockdown
A U.K. parliamentary report has concluded that Britain's Conservative government waited too long to impose a lockdown early in the COVID-19 pandemic
7:05PM ( 7 hours ago )
AP World News
Asian shares fall as rising energy costs fan inflation fears
Shares have fallen in Asia as surging prices of oil, coal and other energy fan fears over inflation
12:56AM ( 2 hours ago )
High winds prompt PG&E to shut power to 25,000 in California
Pacific Gas & Electric has started cutting power to about 25,000 customers in northern and central California as high winds toppled trees, downed power lines and ignited at least one of several fires that forced people to flee from their homes
11:15PM ( 3 hours ago )
Southwest cancels hundreds more flights; passengers stranded
Southwest Airlines has canceled hundreds more flights following a weekend of major service disruptions that it blamed on bad weather and air traffic control issues
9:23PM ( 5 hours ago )
AP Business
EXPLAINER: How global deal stems corporate use of tax havens
Complex global talks have forged a deal on sweeping changes in how multinational companies are taxed
5:34PM ( 9 hours ago )
More than 130 countries reach deal on corporate minimum tax
More than 130 countries have agreed on a tentative deal that would make sweeping changes to how big, multinational companies are taxed in order to deter them from stashing their profits in offshore tax havens where they pay little or no tax
5:25PM ( 9 hours ago )
Stocks give up an early gain and end lower on Wall Street
Stocks gave up an early gain and ended lower on Wall Street Monday
4:12PM ( 10 hours ago )
AP Business - Economy
LEADING OFF: Braves make their pitch to close out Brewers
Boosted by a sharp start from Ian Anderson, Braves pitchers have now thrown 19 straight scoreless innings against Milwaukee in the NL Division Series
2:33AM ( 32 minutes ago )
Christmas comes early: EU, UK back to Brexit wrangling
The European Union and Britain are back to quarreling less than a year after finalizing Brexit
2:19AM ( 46 minutes ago )
Blowin' in the wind: Giants edge Dodgers 1-0 on Longoria HR
Evan Longoria homered off Max Scherzer in the fifth inning and the San Francisco Giants edged the Los Angeles Dodgers 1-0 on a blustery night to take a 2-1 lead in their NL Division Series
2:09AM ( 55 minutes ago )
Surging California winds spark wildfire fears, power outages
Blustery winds are still surging through California after downing trees, fanning wildfires and shutting off power to about 21,000 customers in the northern and central regions
1:40AM ( 1 hour ago )
Hurricane Ida in Louisiana: Caskets, vaults still displaced
A Louisiana task force is working to gather vaults and caskets disrupted from their burial sites by Hurricane Ida and rebury them
1:36AM ( 1 hour ago )