What are the likely consequences of Brexit for the status and rights of British citizenship? Can the fact that every British national is an EU citizen mitigate the possible negative consequences of the UK’s withdrawal from the EU on the plane of the rights enjoyed by the citizens of the UK? These questions are not purely hypothetical, as the referendum on June 23 can potentially mark one of the most radical losses in the value of a particular nationality in recent history. The following is a brief summary of my LSE ‘Europe in Question’ paper.
A glance at the EU Treaty makes clear that EU citizenship as such cannot possibly affect, legally speaking at least, the regulation of withdrawals from the Union: Article 50 TEU, which establishes the procedure to be followed by any withdrawing state, does not contain any EU citizenship-related conditions. Imposing such on a people of a Member State that has just voted precisely to leave the Union would be nothing but a direct attack on the letter and purpose of the provision making withdrawals possible.
This being said, we have to realise that once the UK withdraws, UK nationals are by definition not EU citizens any more: the Treaties are quite clear about the fact that this legal status is based on the nationalities of the Member States (Art. 9 TEU). Once the UK is not a Member State, its nationality cannot possibly trigger EU citizenship status ...Zum vollständigen Artikel