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Boris Johnson in brutal rebuke of Macron’s threats to UK ‘THEY are in breach of deal!’ | Politics | News

Boris Johnson appeared to be rather dismissive of Emmanuel Macron’s warnings that France is ready to retaliate unless the UK undertakes a U-turn on the number of fishing licences issued to French vessels. Paris and London have been at loggerheads for over a month after French vessels lamented not enough permits had been granted to fish in Brexit Britain’s waters. But speaking ahead of this weekend’s G20 meeting in Rome, the Prime Minister told Laura Kuenssberg France’s demands are “dwarfed” by the challenge of climate change.

Mr Johnson said: “The things that unite England and France are far more important than the things that divide us.

“We will obviously work very closely with our friends and partners to get to the bottom of the issues.

“We are a bit worried that France may be about to become in breach or is already in breach of the trade and cooperation agreement that we struck.

“But all those issues are dwarfed by the agenda that Emmanuel Macron and I, and Angela Merkel, and Mario Draghi and all the leaders face today.”

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Mr Macron delivered a serious blow to Anglo-French relations ahead of the G20 Summit after he questioned Britain’s “credibility” because of the ongoing row.

France has claimed the UK has so far failed to fully implement the terms of Brexit trade agreement struck last year.

But the UK Government has insisted the licences have been issued to anyone being able to provide British authorities with necessary proof their vessels had a record of working in British waters.

Mr Johnson continued: “We can get on and do the things that matter to both of us and make sure we work together on tackling the big issues that face the world.

READ MORE: Control the French! EU warned Article 16 ‘will be triggered’ if Macron not reined in

French Prime Minister Jean Castex wrote to European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen to encourage Brussels to back Paris’ position against London.

France has threatened to block British boats from its ports and tighten checks on vessels if an issue over a lack of licences for small French vessels to fish in British waters is not resolved by Tuesday.

Mr Castex urged the EU to use the “levers at its disposal” to press home the need for “compliance” with the Brexit agreement on fishing and to show that “leaving the Union is more damaging than remaining in it”.

But Jean-Marc Puissesseau, president and chairman of the ports of Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer, described the argument as “ridiculous” as he urged both sides to dial down talk of threats and retaliation.

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