Violence will be inevitable in the seas in the event of a no-deal Brexit, according to a Donegal fisherman.
Fisherman Michael Cavanagh said he has no doubts over the prospects for violence if the UK leaves the EU without a deal on October 31.
The Greencastle-based skipper, says that just after the initial March 29th deadline passed, an Irish crew fishing for crab off Scotland got a nasty shock, even though there had been an extension.
“They went to haul their pots, but 400 of them had already been hauled and the eye (which crabs crawl through) had been cut out of all the pots. And it wasn’t Boris Johnson who did it,” Cavanagh told the Irish Times.
Chief executive of the Killybegs Fishermen’s Organisation said the risk of conflict between fisherman was real unless an agreement allowing for the status quo to be retained for a period once Brexit happens was agreed.
“Can you imagine telling fishermen from Greencastle that they can no longer fish outside their back door?” he asks.
Irish fishermen, just like the French, will not be happy if they are barred from areas they have fished for generations, he stressed.
“Neither Michael or I will be able to control this, ” he warns.
Throw into the mix strong policing by Royal Navy boats protecting UK waters and there will be “mayhem”, warns O’Donoghue.
He cites the tension between French and UK fishermen in the English Channel during the so-called scallop wars, when boats were rammed and stones thrown, as an indicator of the potential strife to come.
“Somebody will lose a life,’ agrees Cavanagh.