Fishing boats across Europe are set to remain in harbour this weekend as the stand-off between fishermen and governments over the price of diesel fuel continues. On the Italian Adriatic coast the mood is mutinous.
“If we don’t get any results it will be open war,” said one fisherman. “We are tired of working 80 hours a week without earning a penny.”
An untimely announcement from Brussels, that fishermen should fish less, outraged those in Spain, but they can see the EU getting its way.
“We are on the verge of no longer existing in this profession,” said another fisherman. “A life-long profession is about to disappear. I can’t see my children pursuing this profession. But I wish they would.”
In Madrid they were calling for the head of the prime minister and his agriculture minister. Then, to emphasize their complaint that they were working for nothing, they gave away 20 tonnes of fish to delighted onlookers.
There is still local fish on the shelves in Portugal. The strike is only a day old. But with the annual sardine festival looming people are concerned that there may not be enough fish for that.