Brexit scaremongering blasted by Stephen Barclay as he confronts Verhofstadt face-to-face



Officials said Mr Barclay “reiterated the extensive protections that have been offered to EU citizens living in the UK.” He was also said to have reminded Mr Verhofstadt, who is the European Parliament’s chief Brexit negotiator, “of the impact of scaremongering which feeds the anxiety of EU citizens whom we are seeking to reassure”. Mr Barclay urged the MEP to encourage EU citizens living in the UK to apply to the Government’s settlement scheme to guarantee their right to stay after the UK quits the EU at the end of the month.

The Cabinet minister told Mr Verhofstadt: “The EU Settlement Scheme has been a huge success and 2.5 million people have already been granted a status guaranteeing their right to live, work, study and access benefits such as healthcare.

“The focus should be on offering reassurances and avoiding misconceptions about the EUSS and on ensuring that EU Member States step up and provide a similar level of reassurance for UK nationals.”

Mr Verhofstadt used the meeting to present Mr Barclay with a resolution passed by the European Parliament demanding “on the protection of citizens’ rights”.

Boris Johnson’s Brexit deal with the EU is passing through the final stages of Parliament before it becomes UK law.

However, it must also be approved by the European Parliament for it to become binding.

MEPs have threatened to block the deal unless the UK Government provides further assurances on citizens’ rights.

The citizens’ rights resolution was overwhelmingly backed by MEPs on Tuesday.

Following yesterday’s meeting, Mr Verhofstadt said is discussions with the Brexit Secretary had been “frank”.

He added: “I presented the European Parliament’s resolution on citizen’s rights, adopted this week by a large majority.

“A few adjustments from the UK and more action from some EU countries would end the anxieties of many UK and EU-citizens who deserve certainty.”



Brexit scaremongering blasted by Stephen Barclay as he confronts Verhofstadt face-to-face

CABINET minister Stephen Barclay last night rebuked Brussels negotiator Guy Verhofstadt for “scaremongering” about the rights of EU citizens to stay in the EU after Brexit. The EU Exit Secretary gave the Belgian MEP a dressing down during talks in Downing Street following his repeated claims that their settlement rights could be in jeopardy.


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