Sunday 22 September 2019

UK 'will end freedom of movement' after EU exit


British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Picture: PA
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Picture: PA

Kylie MacLellan

The UK will put an end to its European Union freedom of movement rules immediately after it leaves the bloc on October 31.

But Prime Minister Boris Johnson insists the country would not be hostile to immigration.

"After Brexit the government will introduce a new, fairer immigration system that prioritises skills and what people can contribute to the UK, rather than where they come from," a spokesman for Britain's Home Office said in a statement.

Mr Johnson's spokeswoman said further details on the changes to freedom of movement were being worked on and would include tougher criminality checks.

"What we are going to do is leave the EU and that means that legally all those powers revert to the UK...That does not mean that we are going to stop anybody coming into this country, it doesn't mean that we are going to become remotely hostile to immigration or to immigrants," Mr Johnson told BBC Radio Cornwall.

Irish citizens will keep their rights under the common travel area deal, which pre-dates EU membership.

There would also be no change to planned rules for EU citizens and their families already living in Britain, who would still have until at least December 2020 to apply to Britain's EU settlement scheme.

Irish Independent

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