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    Brexit: Four citizenship problems to be solved before EP approval

    The president of the European Parliament’s steering group on Brexit, Guy Verhofstadt, warned on Tuesday that consent to the UK leaving could not be given without four guarantees concerning European citizens in the United Kingdom.

    “Before we give consent all problems faced by EU27 nationals in the UK need to be solved, including the threat of deportations for those who haven’t registered in time,” Verhofstadt said in a plenary debate.

    To Verhofstadt, there are still four guarantees to be provided by the United Kingdom:

    No deportation for those who missed the deadline.

    More assistance for vulnerable citizens.

    Real independence for the IMA (the authority established to support the complaint files of nationals of the 27 Member States before the British courts).

    Settled status for those actually kept in pre-settled status.

    “We don’t want our EU citizens to become victims in another ‘Windrush’ scandal,” he added.

    The former Belgian Prime Minister referred to the treatment of immigrants of Caribbean origin who arrived in the United Kingdom after the Second World War – the first on the Windrush ship – and were treated as illegal immigrants when they were supposed to be British.

    The protection of EU citizens in the United Kingdom and reciprocity of British citizens in the Union is at the forefront of the European Parliament’s action on the Brexit issue.

    The deal is unlikely to see approval by MEPs until it has been passed by the UK parliament – which could mean a vote takes place very close to the October 31 deadline.

    Jules Johnston
    The Brussels Times