•Today in the European Parliament in Strasbourg, UKIP helped win a vote to defeat a European Commission legislative proposal to continue a fisheries deal with Morocco that is harmful to the interests of the people of occupied Western Sahara.
Speaking after the vote, Stuart Agnew UKIP MEP from England Eastern Region said:
"This is a wonderful defeat for EU-assisted colonialism in Africa. This legislation was harmful to the interests of the people of occupied Western Sahara and clearly breached their rights, as well as established international law.
"UKIP were happy to vote down this proposal and send the European Commission packing."
Last Monday, 12.12.2011, Mr Agnew addressed parliament during the joint debate on the EU-Morocco fisheries partnership agreement.
The debate related to MEP Carl Haglund's Report (A7-0394/2011) on the "Recommendation on the draft Council decision on the conclusion of a Protocol between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco setting out the fishing opportunities and financial compensation provided for in the Fisheries Partnership Agreement between the European Community and the Kingdom of Morocco [11226/2011 - C7-0201/2011 - 2011/0139(NLE)]
The joint debate also dealt with the"future protocol setting out the fishing opportunities and financial compensation provided for in the Fisheries Partnership Agreement between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco" 2011/2949(RSP)[Oral Question -MEPs Carl Haglund, Carmen Fraga Estévez (O-000319/2011), (B7-0671/2011)] The following is a transcript of Stuart Agnew's speech at last Monday's debate in the plenary:
"Morocco has occupied Western Sahara since the 1970’s and if this fisheries deal goes ahead, the EU will be in breach of international law. We know it, the UN knows it, and even the parliament legal services know it.
The financial contribution to Morocco will be 3.6 million euros every year, for EU boats to plunder overfished stocks. The Commission has provided no assurances that the Western Saharan people will benefit from this deal, and I don’t doubt the money will be taken by the Moroccan authorities.
But despite all this, the Commission doesn’t care and wants its deal.
UK boats that operate go to great lengths to make sure local people benefit - so it would be ashame for them to be disrupted. This shows you the failure of EU control over UK fisheries and trade.
I’m appalled that the Lib Dems political group tried to cancel this public debate and submitted a resolution that urges the Commission to close the deal as quickly as possible.
This whole issue just shows how much the EU cares for democracy and human rights around the world."