UK responds to Russia's 'fish and chips' threat following Navalny sanctions

UK responds to Russia's 'fish and chips' threat following Navalny sanctions
Putin attends Russian esports games featuring robot dogs and holograms

A British culinary classic is the latest victim of Russian aggression after the UK imposed sanctions on certain people following the death of Alexei Navalny.

An agreement dating back almost 70 years for British boats to fish in Russian waters, specifically the Barents Sea, has been torn up, meaning there could be supply shortages of the beloved cod and haddock.

It is reported more than 550,000 tonnes of those two fish alone were caught there by British vessels just last year.

That means not only is a regular supply of fish for Britain's iconic fish and chip dish at risk, but it could mean the price of a chippy tea goes up too.

An example of the effect this can have on prices was seen across Europe when Russia temporarily banned exports on fuel last year to balance the supply officials said it needed for themselves.

Navalny, who was one of Vladimir Putin's fiercest critics, died last week with the UK placing sanctions on six people in charge of the Arctic penal colony where he died on Wednesday (February 21).

And Russia has ripped up the agreement that's been in place since 1956 that allowed British boats to fish in the Barents Sea which Russia's parliamentary speaker Vyacheslav Volodin is reported as saying was revoked under the orders of Putin.

Lawmakers voted unanimously in favour of the decision.

In a statement, Volodin said: "When (Soviet leader) Nikita Khrushchev accepted this deal in 1956, it is difficult to say what guided him but it was definitely not national interest.

"When people ask if we can respond to sanctions, the answer is: we can. The British need to study some proverbs: 'Russians harness the horse slowly, but ride it fast'."

Since then, despite the amount of fish caught from the Barents Sea last year, Britain's Government said it had received no official notification from Russia on the matter, but that British vessels did not fish in those waters anyway.

A Government spokesperson said: "UK vessels do not fish in these Russian waters so this would have no material impact on our fish supplies, including cod or haddock."

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