EU demands on Citizens’ Rights are absurdly inflated


May 30, 2017

There is widespread agreement in Britain that the rights of EU citizens in the UK and British citizens in the EU should be protected. However, the Working Paper published in Brussels for consideration today by the Council Working Party on the Brexit negotiations contains a thoroughly unreasonable set of demands.

The agreement would, in effect, grant full access to the welfare state. This may be appropriate for those EU citizens already in the UK. However, the EU goes much further. The scope of the agreement, according to this document, should also include:

(a) Those who have resided here in the past

Our Comment: This could apply to about 5 million people rather than the 3 million who are currently resident.

(b) Any EU citizen who arrives before we leave the EU but after Article 50 was triggered. These individuals will have the right to continue accruing time in the UK towards permanent residence, even if they arrive a few days before the agreement comes into force.

Our Comment: An invitation for a last minute rush

(c) EU citizens who have worked in the UK while living elsewhere in the EU

Our Comment: Absurd

(d) In addition, the rights of family members to join EU citizens in the UK should be protected for life, regardless of their nationality, as well as future family members.

Our Comment: A wide open door, including for abuse as has been evident in the past

(e) The rights of family members, more generally, should be protected for life

Our Comment: This includes children and perhaps grandchildren. Where does it end?

The document insists that the Commission should have full powers for monitoring and the European Court of Justice should have full jurisdiction for the duration of the period of protection. This must apply to the lifetime of EU citizens currently in Britain and their children. This could well mean that Britain would be subject to the European Court of Justice for another 75 years or more.

Commenting, Lord Green of Deddington, Chairman of Migration Watch UK said:

These proposals are not just aggressive, they include everything except the kitchen sink. Indeed, at points they verge on the absurd. Furthermore, the Commission are insisting on full powers of monitoring as well as full jurisdiction for the European Court of Justice which, as they know, would be unacceptable to the British people.

Notes to Editors

The document prepared by the European Commission Taskforce for the Preparation and Conduct of the Negotiations with the United Kingdom under Article 50 TEU for discussion at the Council Working Party (Article 50) on 30 May 2017 can be read here.



We use cookies to help us improve the website.

I Understand About Cookies