The U.S. Refuses To Stop Invading Canadian Waters

A spokesman for New Brunswick fishermen based on Grand Manan Island says at least 10 Canadian fishing boats have been intercepted by U.S. Border Patrol agents since last week while fishing in the disputed wate

"Additionally Border Patrol does not board Canadian Vessels in the Grey Zone without consent or probable cause and only conduct interviews as a vessel runs parallel to it, bow to stern", they said.

Fishermen are enraged by the incidents and the Canadian government has said it's investigating.

None of those interventions resulted in any immigration arrests, she said, adding that the patrol also participated in two sea rescues.

At least 10 Canadian fishing boats from New Brunswick have been intercepted in the past two weeks off the coast of ME by U.S. Border Patrol agents looking for undocumented immigrants, The Canadian Press reported Wednesday.

Laurence Cook, a spokesman for a Canadian fishermen's association, told Canadian media that at least 10 vessels were intercepted in the last two weeks alone near the Manchias Seal Island, just off the coast of ME and the Canadian province of New Brunswick.

Indeed, it's not for nothing the area is called the grey zone - gray zone to the Americans. Boats from both countries have fished the waters comfortably for years.

A June 25 Facebook post by Laurence Cook, chair of the association's lobster-fishing committee, was less diplomatic.

"Typical American bullies ... not surprised to see the Americans trying to push people around", Cook wrote.

The suggestion that the border agents were looking for illegal immigrants seems improbable, he said.

Ties between Canada and the United States have been strained since President Donald Trump slapped tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum, citing U.S. national security, with Trump calling Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau "very dishonest" and "weak" after a spat at the G7 meeting in Quebec last month.

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"They shouldn't simply be in the business of stopping people at random who are not suspected of doing anything wrong, whether that is on our roads or our water".

Global Affairs Canada distributed a brief email saying it is investigating "incidents that occurred in Canadian waters". "Canada's sovereignty over the Machias Seal Island and the surrounding waters is long standing and has a strong foundation in global law".

Machias Seal Island is located off Cutler, Maine, about 200 miles (320 kilometres) up the coast from Portland.

The federal agency did not confirm how many vessels this had happened to.

But that's not what fishermen have told Canadian officials.

A spokesperson for the fishermen told the Press that agents boarded the boats asking about the presence of undocumented immigrants.

ME fishermen report being stopped and asked for identification and some boats have reportedly been boarded by Border Patrol agents. "As far as I'm concerned, it needs to stop immediately". "It's quite disturbing when you have fishermen on the water, doing their job, providing for their families ... and they're being harassed". The island's only residents, other than numerous seabirds such as puffins, are lighthouse keepers, who are employed by the Canadian Coast Guard. Between Trump and Trudeau launching tariff's and new border rules, tensions have been on the rise between our two countries.

Those types of agreements were brokered long before President Donald Trump took office, but Gilbert said that due to his administration's aggressive border-security policies (not to mention the ongoing trade war between Canada and the US), Canadians are beginning to regret giving the US so much authority. In fact, he said the officers appear unfamiliar with the marine world and would nearly certainly be unable to distinguish between Canadian and US vessels.

Tensions between Canada and the U.S. are now high over trade issues related to American tariffs on steel and aluminium and retaliatory Canadian levies; disputes over dairy, lumber, and wine; and the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement.

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