Economy

Britain, EU clash over Brexit proposals on citizens' rights

Britain, EU clash over Brexit proposals on citizens' rights”

May called the election to secure a mandate for pulling Britain out of the EU's single market in order to cut immigration - a key issue in the Brexit vote - but some of her ministers are now warning that jobs and the economy must be the priority.

It comes after Theresa May, speaking to EU leaders at a summit in Brussels, said that the United Kingdom would allow European citizens arriving lawfully in the United Kingdom before Brexit to stay in the country. There were also unanswered questions about the rights citizens' family members among other issues.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, second left, speaks with, from left, Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, Finnish Prime Minister Juha Sipila and Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven during a round table meeting at an EU Summit in Brussels on Friday, June 23, 2017.

"They will be enshrined in United Kingdom law, they will be enforced through the highly respected United Kingdom courts, and of course if this is an aspect of the withdrawal treaty then it will be enshrined in global law as well", she said.

"My first impression is that the U.K.'s offer is below our expectations, and that it risks worsening the situation of citizens", Tusk said.

The 27 European Union leaders demanded many more details on the United Kingdom proposal to guarantee the rights of the 3 million European Union citizens who now live in Britain. "It will be for our negotiating team to analyze the offer line by line".

Austrian Chancellor Christian Kern said May's proposals are "a first step" but warned there are still many European citizens in Britain who would not be covered by the proposals.

Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel called it a "particularly vague proposal". "We are now at the start of all this and we don't know whether it will be a sprint or a marathon", he said.

Anyone arriving after the triggering of Article 50, but before a notional cut-off date, yet to be set, would also have the chance to stay for five years and gain the status.

Those with a shorter period of residency will be able to stay on to reach the five-year threshold and others arriving after a yet-to-be-defined cut-off date will have a "grace period" to regularise their status.

"We welcome the steps put forward by the prime minister, which would offer certainty to the 165,000 health and care staff who deliver vital services to communities in England", he said. "The rights of European citizens should be guaranteed in the long term". In that time, we've seen May trigger Article 50, call a general election, right before the Brexit negotiations, in the hope of securing a stronger Conservative majority for the European Union talks, and then having those hopes subsequently dashed when she lost the majority altogether and had to make a deal with the controversial unionist party - the DUP - simply to remain the Prime Minister.

But Mrs May set her face firmly against ECJ involvement, while suggesting that expats' rights could be protected by global treaty.

"But from our point of view, these will be enforced, they will be enshrined in United Kingdom law, they will be enforced through the highly respected United Kingdom courts and of course if this is an aspect of the withdrawal treaty then it will be enshrined in global law as well".

"This would disadvantage colleagues who have come to the United Kingdom in the last 12 months".



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