Two million UK citizens working abroad could become illegal immigrants overnight if Britain were to leave the European Union , former attorney general Dominic Grieve has warned in this Guardian article.
Presumably the extract below from his article refers to the cases of Norway and Switzerland, both countries accepting freedom of movement as part of their EU trading agreements.
“The requirements of any free trade agreement would make British removal from the clauses dealing with freedom of movement impossible,” he explained, “with the curious consequence that the single biggest cause of domestic irritation with the EU, immigration, would remain unaltered. But without its maintenance some 2 million UK citizens working in EU countries would find themselves becoming illegal immigrants overnight.”
It’s a provocative article as far as British government policy on the EU and the ECHR is concerned. The headline has also been selected for maximum impact, not least on the estimated 1 – 2 million British citizens who currently reside in the other EU member states. It also rather undermines the UKIP argument that an exit from the EU would solve the uncontrolled immigration problem if the UK wants a free trade agreement instead.
If you are one of these British expatriate citizens (not already excluded by the 15-year-rule), make sure that you can make your voice heard in the 7th May general election by registering as an overseas voter on the British government website https//www.gov.uk/register-to-vote.