British PM says post-Brexit rights of EU nationals are 'priority'
PR dla Zagranicy
Britain's Prime Minister has taken to Facebook to address the 3.3 million European Union citizens, including about a million Poles, living in the UK about their futures after Brexit.
Theresa May. Photo: EPA/NEIL HALL.
British Prime Minister Theresa May said the rights of European Union nationals living in the UK and UK nationals living in the European Union were her "main priority."
She added that “the focus over the weeks to come will be delivering an agreement that works for people here in the UK, and people in the EU”.
She said that, as well as matters of residency, the agreement would address concerns about healthcare, pensions and other benefits.
May said that red tape would be limited, that new UK residency applicants would be offered a “streamlined digital process”, while foreigners who are already residents would have “a simple process … to swap their current status for UK settled status”.
She said that European Union citizens had made a “huge contribution” to the UK and that Britain wanted them, and their families, to stay.
May’s open letter was published as she headed to Brussels for a two-day European Union summit where progress on Brexit was to be discussed.
The letter was posted on May’s official Facebook profile and sent directly to 100,000 people who signed up to get the message. It was also to be sent to the ambassadors of the European Union's 27 other member states in London, who have been asked to pass the information on to their compatriots living in the UK.
Brexit negotiations started this March after a UK referendum last year in which Britain decided it would leave the bloc. The divorce is expected to be finalized by the end of March 2019. (vb/pk)