UK PREPARES ROYAL NAVY SHIPS IN CASE OF NO-DEAL BREXIT


13/12/2020




İrem UZUN -TDO- The UK readied armed Royal Navy ships on Saturday to patrol its fishing waters in case the Brexit transition period ends without a free-trade deal on future relations with the European Union. Four 80-meter vessels have been placed on standby to safeguard British waters from foreign vessels in the event both UK and the EU decide to abandon efforts to secure an agreement on Sunday.

The Ministry of Defense, confirming the move, said the deployment of the boats had been agreed as part of planning for the end of the transition period. Patrol powers will be beefed up with Navy officers allowed to board foreign vessels and arrest fishermen if no deal is reached, according to the Times.

Fishing has been one of the sticking points in talks, which are fast approaching their end on Sunday with both sides saying no deal is likely. Access to each other's waters will end next year, although Brussels has called for the current terms to continue for 12 months, a request that appears to have been rejected.

The army ships will be allowed to stop, check and seize all EU fishing boats caught within the UK's exclusive economic zone, which can extend 320 kilometers from shore. The Ministry of Defense said the vessels will be ready on January 1 to prevent possible clashes between EU and British fishing boats. "The Ministry has conducted extensive planning and preparation to ensure that Defense is ready for a range of scenarios at the end of the Transition Period," a spokesman said.


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