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European Parliament: Give Britons free movement across EU

Christian Fernsby ▼ | January 15, 2020
The European Parliament has urged that continuing future free movement across the whole EU should be guaranteed for those British people living in the EU before the end of the transition period as well as a lifelong right of return for EU citizens living in the UK.
European Parliament
Living in Europe   European Parliament
The latter refers to the ability to come and go from other EU states in future without ever losing their right to live and work in the UK, whereas the Withdrawal Agreement (WA) only allows existing expatriates a maximum five years away from the country where they live before losing rights to live and work there.

Topics: Europe Britons

During the Brexit negotiations the UK negotiators at one stage proposed this in return for 'continuing free movement' for Britons, but the EU said this could be looked at in the ‘future relationship’ talks.

The MEPs also urged EU states to allow Britons to vote in local elections in their countries (Britain intends to allow EU citizens to continue to vote in local elections in the UK). During the negotiations the EU said this should remain a matter for each state.

The MEPs also said they regretted that the UK had generally ruled out continuation of free movement after Brexit between the EU and UK. They said they hoped any ‘future relationship’ agreement between the UK and EU would, on the contrary, “include ambitious provisions concerning the movement of persons”.

They also recalled that many UK citizens, both resident in the UK and in other EU states, had “expressed strong opposition” to losing their rights as EU citizens and said the EU should look at how to mitigate this, but respecting reciprocity and the limits of EU treaty law.