Boris Johnson today looked as if he had to be held back by Canadian PM Justin Trudeau when he saw French President Emmanuel Macron at the G20 summit.
As the Channel fisheries row continues to intensify the PM and French President came face-to-face in Rome for a group photo of world leaders.
One hilarious image seemed to capture the moment Mr Trudeau held onto Mr Johnson’s arm as they made their way onto the platform.
The photograph appeared to suggest the two world leaders were about to come to blows over the rising tensions caused by the fisheries row.
Mr Macron grinned as European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen directed Mr Johnson to his spot.
In a round of broadcast interviews this morning, Mr Johnson warned the UK could trigger legal repercussions in the post-Brexit trade agreement as soon as next week.
But the chief of Calais port insisted this morning that Britain faces ‘disaster’ if Mr Macron follows through on a threat to block British trawlers from French ports.
French President Emmanuel Macron laughs as Boris Johnson is helped up the stage as he arrives for the group photo of world leaders at the La Nuvola conference center in Rome
Fishermen stand aboard the British trawler Cornelis-Gert Jan docked in the northern French port of Le Havre as it waits to be given permission to leave today
In the latest stoking of the row, French counterparts have claimed the British trawler-men arrested for allegedly fishing in French waters without a licence are ‘pirates’ who ‘deserve everything they get’ for endangering the fish-stock.
Emmanuel Montard criticised the UK scallop boats for jeopardising the livelihoods of future generations by over-fishing in the waters on the Normandy coast.
The 54-year-old trawler-man is one of dozens of residents of picturesque Port en Bessin, where family have been fishing for scallops for generations.
Standing on the dock of the Normandy port he told of his anger, saying: ‘These British fishermen who come into our waters and work without a licence are pirates and deserve everything they get from French justice.’
Meanwhile, French PM Jean Castex has written to Ms von der Leyen seeking backing for a new hardline stance against the UK.
Paris has so far threatened to increase checks on British boats, to initiate a ‘go-slow’ strategy with Calais customs arrangements, stop UK fishing vessels from landing in French ports and to increase tariffs on energy bills in Jersey.
They are demanding that Britain grants more licences to French fishermen to access British waters.
Mr Johnson and Mr Macron are holding talks about the Iran nuclear programme along with Joe Biden and Angela Merkel in Rome this afternoon – and will meet one-on-one at the summit tomorrow.
Asked if there was a sense of ‘de ja vu’ after he and Mr Macron clashed over at the G7 summit earlier this year, Mr Johnson insisted he wasn’t worried about the ongoing feud and said he’s got ‘bigger fish to fry’.
The captain leaves the scallop trawler Cornelis-Gert Jan with his lawyer.The boat has been impounded by the French Gendarmerie Maritime
Pictured: The man believed to be the captain of the the Cornelis Gert Jan seen on the boat this morning
A fisherman speaks to journalists from on board British trawler the Cornelis-Gert Jan Dumfries is docked in the northern French port of Le Havre as it waits to be given permission to leave today
British trawler the Cornelis-Gert Jan Dumfries is docked in the northern French port of Le Havre as it waits to be given permission to leave today
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He told : ‘It’s about fish rather than sausages this time, I don’t know if that’s an improvement.
‘Actually, there are bigger fish to fry, everybody knows that.Am I worried about that? The answer is no.’
Meanwhile, Mr Montard added: ‘We have adopted strict rules to make sure that there are fish stocks for future generations. We can only fish for scallops four days a week and we don’t start fishing for these shell-fish until October.
‘We leave the scallops alone throughout the summer so they can reproduce.But these British, they work seven days a week and they fish all through the year. We all understand that they are fishermen and they need to make a living.
‘But they are endangering the fish-stocks and jeopardizing the livelihoods for future generations.What will they do for work when all the fish are gone?’
Emmanuel, one of ten crew members on the Kevin III scallop trawler, added: ‘We are all from fishing families. My father was a fisherman and his father before him.
‘We want our children to be able to be able to make a living from fishing too.But if the British take all the fish there will be nothing left for them.’
The Captain of the Kevin III trawler was even more forthright in his condemnation of the British fisherman.
He told MailOnline: ‘Those British fisherman can all go and get stuffed.We will do whatever we have to the preserve our way of living.
‘The British have stopped us fishing around the Iles Normandes [Channel Islands] and so we will stop the British from landing their catch in France.
‘If that does not make them wake up then we will cut the electricity to the islands.They must understand that they cannot exist without us.’
Fishermen from Port en Besson led the attack on the British fishing fleet operating in the Bay of Normandy in 2018, in what came to be known as the Scallops Wars.
The militant trawler-men also blockaded the Jersey port of St Hellier in May this year after the Channel Island authorities refused French boats fishing licences.
Asked about the situation this morning, Mr Johnson said: ‘We are very keen to work with our friends and partners on all these issues.
The fishing row stepped up a gear on Friday after a UK trawler was detained by France amid fears the friction could spark a full-blown trade war.Pictured: A fisherman reacts after seeing a picture of him in a newspaper, in Le Havre’s harbour, northern France, yesterday
Photographs showed the crew of the high-jacked fishing boat still remained in good spirits in Le Harve on Friday despite facing a £70,000 fine for allegedly poaching in French waters
Boris Johnson and Emmanuel Macron put on a show as G20 leaders posed for their family photo at a Rome summit today
‘If another European country wants to break the TCA – the Trade and Co-operation agreement – then obviously we will have to take steps to protect UK interests.
‘If there is a breach of the treaty or we think there is a breach of the treaty then we will do what is necessary to protect British interests.’
President and chairman of the ports of Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer, Jean-Marc Puissesseau, said the row and subsequent threats over fishing rights were ‘ridiculous’.
Speaking to BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Puissesseau said there would be ‘terrible’ consequences if France carried out its threat of blocking British trawlers from French ports over the decision to deny ‘only 40 little boats’ licences to fish in UK waters.
‘If no agreement can be found, it will be a drama, it will be a disaster in your country because the trucks will not cross (the border),’ he said.
‘I think it is a ridiculous point and I hope that the British will find an agreement, a solution to get out of this point.’
He added: ‘For us in Calais, I think it is on Tuesday, we have to control more trucks getting out of our port and trucks coming from your country.
‘But it will be terrible for both sides of the Channel: for you, for us, for the ports, the fishermen in your country, for the fishermen in our country.And that’s only for 40 little boats which are not allowed to fish in your country, so I hope there will be an agreement on that over the weekend.’
Pictured: French President Emmanuel Macron (right) is greeted by Italy’s Prime Minister Mario Draghi (left) at the G20 summit in Rome today
Britain must be punished for Brexit to show other EU states that ‘leaving is more damaging than remaining’, France’s prime minister has said in a furious letter. In what is a further escalation of Britain’s ongoing row with it’s Channel neighbour over fishing rights, Jean Castex (pictured) wrote to European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen on Thursday in an attempt to get backing for a new hard line stance against the UK
The fishing row stepped up a gear on Friday after a UK trawler was detained by France amid fears the friction could spark a full-blown trade war. The Cornelis Gert Jan was ordered to divert to Le Havre after French authorities said it did not have a licence.
The trawler’s boss claimed his vessel was being used as a ‘pawn’ in the fishing dispute and blasted the ‘politically motivated’ French.
Mr Johnson yesterday stressed that the Government will do ‘whatever is necessary’ to ensure that British fishing fleets can go about their ‘lawful’Mercedes limousine from Paris, as one confirmed: ‘We are here to see the British nationals.’
It comes as France’s Europe minister Clement Beaune has been posturing about tough action by insisting the only language Britain understands is ‘the language of force’.
Speaking to reporters en route to the G20 summit in Rome tonight, Boris Johnson (pictured) stressed that he did not believe French President Emmanuel Macron himself – who is facing a presidential election battle next spring – was making threats
Asked about claims France is ready to disrupt trade over Christmas in the dispute, Mr Johnson said: ‘We will do whatever is necessary to ensure UK interests. But I haven’t heard that from our French friends. I would be surprised if they adopted that approach.’ (Pictured: Macron)
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