22/01/2013 Newsnight Scotland


22/01/2013

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will be something none of us predicted. Thank you very much.

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Tonight on Newsnight Scotland: An international lawyer and former

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White House advisor gives us his verdict on how the United States

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might see an independent Scotland. And a conservation society says we

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should cut back on mackerel. Fishermen tell us to ignore them.

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So who's right? Good evening. Amid all the claims and counter claims,

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agreement over an independent Scotland's position on the

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international stage seems as far off as ever. Earlier this evening,

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a former adviser to the Clinton administration told an audience at

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the University of Glasgow that while international law will play a

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part, political negotiation and diplomacy will be key to deciding

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Scotland's membership of the likes of NATO, the UN and of course the

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European Union. For the First Minister this turned out to be

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politically damaging. Have you sought advice from your own

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Scottish block officers on this matter? We have. But the row over

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EU membership shows that whatever Alex Salmond and his opponents

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claim the year is no way to renegotiate membership from the

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inside or outside. One part of the country, I am not speaking about

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any specific one, if it wants to become an independent State it has

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to apply for European membership. Even this intervention has proved

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to be far from definitive. Less controversial would be membership

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of the United Nations. An organisation that includes

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Afghanistan and Zimbabwe to it surely find a place on the flagpole

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for a suit -- Scotland. demonstrated against the Iraq war,

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I am tired marching, I want a seat for our Government. Last year, the

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SNP voted narrowly to change membership. It is now clear that

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nuclear weapons would have to go, that is none of course you will.

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Diplomacy and politics are more likely to decide Scotland's

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position than international ditties and historic precedent. It is

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surely wrong to think that somewhere in the bowels of the

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State Department, Barack Obama does not have someone keeping an eye on

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all of this. David Scheffer teaches International Human Rights Law and

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International Criminal Law. Previously he served as a senior

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adviser to Madeleine Albright during the Clinton administration,

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and has published extensively on international legal and political

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issues. He joins me now. Before we get on to the legal stuff I am

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interested in you having been an adviser to the Clinton

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administration. Madeleine Albright was in Glasgow not that long ago

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and made a critical speech on the dangers of fragmentation within the

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European Union. Do you think that reflects the view the State

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department would have? I think it is a natural point of view for them

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to have because the world is at a lot simpler for the United States

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is a United Kingdom were not to break up. It does not complicate

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matters within any talk in terms of how a divided United Kingdom would

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retain its role and membership in NATO. It complicates the picture

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enormously for the United States. It does not surprise me that that

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point of view is expressed. That is what I would expect. You would

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expect the American Government to be against an independent Scotland

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even if it is not jumping out and saying that in public? Absolutely.

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It presents strategic complications and security issues for the United

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States. That does not mean there will not be someone in the State

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Department looking at the aspirations of the Scottish people

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but they will be looking at it much more from a strategic and political

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point of view. Presumably, as you said, breaking up the UK, there

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also seems to be a broader perspective. One point is that the

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Americans want the European Union to be as strong as possible.

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would say with all due respect to Madeleine Albright, it does not

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necessarily reach the conclusion that if Scotland breaks off from

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the United Kingdom that somehow weakens the European Union. I was

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thinking more of presidents such as Catalonia or other parts of the

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European Union. The idea is that a European Union which is externally

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fragmented is externally weaker. There is clearly a domino theory at

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work here. If one were to go down clearly others could go down with

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in Europe which would weaken the European Union. Each of these

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situations is so unique that whether it be Spain, Belgium or

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otherwise, we must look at how one can retained the overall unity of

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the European Union, the overall unity of NATO, without necessarily

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dictating that each existing member State has to retain its existing

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political formulation for years on end, in the future. Life is going

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to change. The European landscape will change. You seem to be saying

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it would not necessarily be right to stick with the status quo.

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at all. I do not necessarily align myself with that point of view. I

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think the European Union needs to accommodate these kinds of

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adjustment within sovereignty of the European Union and the NATO

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alliance. You cannot look at either of those organisations with a

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static notion of what their future looks like. If you're overall aim

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is to retain the overall unity of these alliances and that structure,

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you need to pay attention to what is happening within each member

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State. If you were back in the State Department and people turned

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around and said this is wrong, Britain is one of the most

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important allies, a Britain without do not want that, there is no

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conceivable way in which that would be good for America, of what would

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you say? I would argue internally. There are different ways of looking

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at the issue. At the end of the day it is predictable that the United

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States would stand with the United Kingdom as a strong ally and

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express itself with that respect. got the impression weeding your

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speech that you might actually rather favour Scotland becoming

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independent, am I being fair? -- a reading your speech. I am not

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opposed to it. The expression of the Scottish people needs to be

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confirmed in the referendum. If it is yes I think a path we should be

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discovered for the independence of Scotland. I think it is entirely

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natural as an expression of self determination in it 2013 for there

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to be a referendum on this issue. That is am very natural evolution.

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This part of the United Kingdom has been on a path to its sense at

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least the 1970s. It is a logical trajectory. There is nothing

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shocking about it. No one should be surprised at that a referendum is

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being held. In the future, if a referendum is being held, there are

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ways to move this situation towards what I considered to be at very

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reasonable separation of the rest If Scotland were to become

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independent, you think it is tenable that Britain is on the

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Security Council given that there are countries like Germany and

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Japan which already questioned, sometimes, whether it is

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appropriate for Britain to be there. A undoubtedly, debate will arise as

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to the future. Let me be more specific. Yes, there will be

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questions raised. About the continuation of the permanent seat

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of the United Kingdom, if this process moves forward, with

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Scotland, but Scotland would play a stronger hand if it works closely

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with London to sustain the permanent seat in the United

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Nations Security Council by using its emerging relationships with

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other nations to essentially lobby those other nations for the

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continuation of the United Kingdom's seat. One of your former

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State Department colleagues said, we're dealing with countries like

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China, Japan and Brazil, here. United Kingdom still holds a pretty

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strong hand in the Security Council in terms of the ultimate vote as to

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its own fate within the Security Council. What I am saying is that,

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whenever Russia retained the Security Council seat, and that was

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to a friendly agreement within the council. The United Kingdom is

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perfectly capable of retaining a similar, friendly agreement, but it

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can only do so, in my view, if Scotland stands with it in seeking

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that friendly agreement with and the council. -- within. Its health

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benefits have made it a popular choice for our dinner plates, but

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now mackerel has been downgraded from a list of fish suitable to eat.

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The Marine Conservation Society says it is no longer a sustainable

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choice, thanks largely to Iceland and the Faroe Islands increasing

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the amount of the species that they catch. The move has angered

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Scotland's fishermen, who are urging us to ignore the advice.

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Here's Steven Godden. Attractive might not be the work that springs

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to mind, but appearance, it seems, is no barrier for the upwardly

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mobile mackerel. This Glasgow fishmonger boost its rice down to a

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combination of factors, among them, celebrity chef endorsement under

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push to encourage people to eat more oily fish. Today his customers

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have something to ponder after the Marine Conservation Society took

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mackerel off his list of suitable fish to eat. The leaves me with a

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dilemma. I know that there is going to be mackerel available. Scottish

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fishermen are going to be lending it. I have to consider what is

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sustainable, what my customers are going to be happy with, and the

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fish that I supply them with is actually going to be sustainable,

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long into the future. sustainability is at the root of

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their advice. Mackerel was traditionally found mainly in the

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north-east Atlantic. In the last few years it has seen a shift

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north-west towards Iceland and the Faeroe Islands. A decision by those

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governments to refuse quota agreements with other North

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Atlantic countries was at the same time significantly increasing how

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much they catch infuriated fishing leaders, triggering the so called

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mackerel wars. Is human nature. They want to capitalise on the

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stock, but the stock is of a finite size, and the fishing pressure is

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almost double what it should be, so the stock is in danger of

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collapsing entirely. Scottish fishermen say that the charity has

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a point about Iceland and the fear Roy Evans over-fishing but insist

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they have been too hasty, warning people off mackerel. For latest

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scientific advice, produced in October, shows that the sign that

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it level is at 2.7 million tonnes, and the signs says the safe limit

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is 2.2 million tonnes. The stock is well above these limits. We feel

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they should have waited until there was some fresh information before

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coming out with the statement. extra they will produce fresh date

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on mackerel stocks, but as the increase in quotas continues, this

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humble fish will remain a political animal. Joining me from our London

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studio is Jim Masters, from the Marine Conservation Society, who

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you saw on that film. And also in London is Bertie Armstrong of the

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Scottish Fishermen's Federation. It is a bit confusing. You're not

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saying that mackerel is in danger, but you're saying don't eat it.

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We're not telling people not to eat it, we're telling people, advising

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people, to exercise caution when thinking about sourcing mackerel

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and eating it, which is an entirely different thing. It is not as if

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people eat it every day, is it? is not in the list of fish to a boy

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completely, they should think twice before producing it. If people

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continue to eat mackerel, they should source that fish from the

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lowest impact fisheries or fisheries previously set to fight

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as sustainable before the recent advice. -- certified. You're saying

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that this is nonsense? This advice is very much premature. The stock

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is nowhere remotely near collapsing. It has changed its migration into

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Icelandic waters because of the size of it. It is not near collapse.

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We would like this thing to change to the source of the problem and

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the source of the problem is gross over catching by Iceland and the

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Faeroe Islands outside International Again is. What would

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be helpful in the argument is a people focused on the reputation of

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Iceland as a fisheries manager rather than concentrating on what

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you pointed out was confusing advice from the Marine Conservation

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Society. I noticed you nodding in agreement. Yes, there is a bigger

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picture at stake, and that is the unilateral appropriation of stocks

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by Icelandic and Faroese fisherman. After many advice -- years of

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nurturing stocks were Scottish and poor regions please, from a very

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low level in 2002... 0 but the fish just went up there, did they?

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not sure why they might have been found up there, it could be because

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they are chasing prey, it could be climate change, but they are

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fuelling in greater numbers off the coast of Iceland. Why can't this be

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sorted out? Your demanding sanctions against the Icelandic

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fleet. They make the point that the EU and we all we are still

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demanding 90% of the fishery when most of the fish are in Icelandic

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waters. Most of the fish are assuredly not. 1% of spawning

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happens in Icelandic waters. The migration starts near the Arctic

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Circle and ends up by the IB the insular. There is not a body of

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fish going exclusively into the Icelandic waters. This is

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opportunism, buy them. The way that they are bridging this is basically

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mugging. They are going to catch the fish in such prodigious

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quantities that you are going to have to pay attention to the stock

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were received the eventually, and they want a really big share. It is

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like saying, you have a big house and the spare room, there is a

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homeless person here, I am just win to have that spare room. Grimsby,

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which are think is the biggest processing fish town in Britain

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relies heavily on Icelandic fish. If you are worried about jobs in

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Scotland, you could be put in hundreds of people out of a job,

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there. What will actually happen is, the threat to Iceland by the EU,

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saying to them, you going to have to be yourself or we will have to

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take sanctions, so please come back to the negotiating table. Nobody

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has said that Iceland and the Faeroe Islands are not entitled to

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a share, but what we're looking at is the size of that share, and the

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way they are advancing the argument is by taking the role of the

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European quota. We will take you as a neutral in this one. What could

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they do to sort this out? Platforms exist to resolve this dispute

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between different fishing interests. We are not here to play politics

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with the fish stock in any shape or form. We are here to raise an issue

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about sustainable fishing. In the long term, sustainable fishing

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makes economic and environmental sense for everybody. Thank you both

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very much indeed. A quick look at tomorrow's newspapers. The Scotsman,

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Cameron says UK support for the EU But the picture of the British

:19:40.:19:47.

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