Thursday, 21 Oct 2021

‘Put British citizens first!’ Boris urged to rip up EU deal as UK expats targeted by bloc

Spain: British expats face threat of return to UK warns expert

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The issue of the rights of UK expats living in EU27 states after Brexit has become a particularly hot potato after March 31, the deadline for applications to the Government’s EU Settlement Scheme. All such rights were meant to protect in accordance with the Withdrawal Agreement which took Britain out of the EU at the end of 2019.

But now, Britons have lashed out at the bloc and many have called for Boris Johnson to rip up the Brexit trade deal amid accusations of expats being badly treated.

One reader said: “Did anyone really expect the EU to behave differently?

“They were always going to try and make things as difficult as possible for Britain for daring to think for themselves and want to leave a dictatorship.

“Time for a government that will put Britain’s citizens and national interests first.”

Another person said: “And we all remember Verhofstadt demanding that the rights of four and a half million EU citizens living in the UK are protected.

“Hypocrisy again from the EU.”

Someone else said: “Should never have bothered with all the haggling for a deal.

“We should have left in 2018.”

Another person added: “The UK Government will, I hope, hit back with demands and complaints about the lack of implementation of the deal on the EU side when ratification is complete.

“Hope the EU don’t ratify the deal but they will.

“The EU bluster and demands are just that.”

A fourth reader said: “What if Boris permits the same treatment to EU expats in this country?

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“It’s a pointless exercise so whatever the EU does we can always do the same back so nobody wins.”

While another person claimed the EU sees the expats as “bargaining chips” rather than people.

Others pointed out expats in the EU have had five years to “sort out their papers”.

One person said: “What rot, they have had 5 years to sort out their papers, the only reason they never registered as resident was so they didn’t pay UK or Spanish tax.

“We shouldn’t feel any sympathy for them.

“They want to use our NHS without paying for it and live in Spain tax-free.”

Someone else said: “I’m an expat. People had four years to sort out their residency status, those that didn’t are either idiots or illegals with no right to be there.

“Zero sympathy for either.”

It comes after Brexiteer Jayne Adye, of Get Britain Out, warned: “While the EU Parliament continues to try and interfere and question our sovereignty, its own Governments – France and Spain in particular – have categorically failed to hold up their responsibilities set out in the Withdrawal Agreement.

“Across the EU, UK expats are facing a myriad of unnecessary checks and restrictions, as well as trumped-up costs for administration tasks, such as getting a European Drivers Licence.”

She added: “Many are unable to open new bank accounts, move home, vote or even travel around Europe without having their rights questioned.”

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