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“We are killing handicraft”: fishermen show their teeth in the port of Brest

“Let’s work! ”, “Europe and NGOs are killing us! “,” We are not sea marauders! “,” Artisanal Fishing = Responsible Fishing “,” Will we be next for scrapping? All these slogans were chanted and waved this Thursday in Brest (Finistère). As a new seasonal storm approaches the tip of Brittany, anger is already brewing among fishermen. Particularly in Brittany, where fishing makes up almost 60% of the French industry.

Finistère is the first French department to represent this profession. It was in Brest that hundreds of launch vehicles were launched on Thursday. Fishermen from Gilvinec, Concarneau, Auderne, Douarnenez, Roscoff, Aber-Vrack, Conque, Erquy and Paimpol (Côtes-d’Armor), and Lorient (Morbihan) were assembled at the first port to begin the now national operation. “dead ports”. Goal: Temporarily stop fishing, close auctions and get the same from wholesalers, carriers and fish traders.

Over 700 demonstrators

Reasons for anger? “There are a lot of them,” complains Philippe Perrault, vice president of the Finistère Fisheries Committee, coordinator of the event, which, according to police, gathered about 700 demonstrators. “In addition to the Brexit-related fishing bans and the subsequent Individual Assistance Plan (PAI) to reduce the fleet, which many call broken planthere is always a high price (despite state aid) diesel, and especially the news that most offends European restrictions on the catch of marine protected areas. »

“This is more than half of our fishing grounds,” lamented Ronan, 34. It’s mostly artisanal here, and that’s what we’re killing. How are you going to get fresh fish from our shores now? Soon it won’t be anymore…” And Tristan adds: “What will be left if we block everything? The share of imported fish is already huge. »

The movement will continue this Friday

“We fish for flounder in the Bay of Biscay five months of the year,” says Philippe Branellec, captain of the 22m gillboat Judine. We are one of the largest boats that can be found in the region (8 to 24 m usually). The rest of the time we are in the English Channel (which is dotted with Natura 2000 territories) to catch burbot. We won’t be able to fish in the bay anymore because there are ten times as many dolphins off the coast as there were 50 years ago. It’s not because they, like many here, don’t have acoustic repellants. We are even now being asked to buy cameras. Where are we going ? “A group of young people between the ages of 17 and 20 from the Gilvinek Maritime School let it slip: “We are learning. But the current situation may discourage more than one. »

A procession of fishing boats and hundreds of demonstrators on the wharf headed for the dismantling sites of Navaleo (the city of Ponant was the first naval repair and dismantling port), where the first trawlers had already become victims of the “destruction plan”.

Then the meeting took on a whole new dimension. A fire of tires, pallets, trash cans and giant lockers was lit in front of the premises of the French Biodiversity Authority, and a 30-year-old man was injured by one of hundreds of flares, fireworks, firecrackers that interrupted traffic. The latter will continue this Friday in Quimper and Gilvineck. A call has also been made to speak on Monday, April 3, before the Council of State in Paris.

Source: Le Parisien

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