Thursday, 24 September 2020

PM: Britain must not restrict others' rights before Brexit

3 October 2016

Prague, Oct 2 (CTK) - Equal rights and duties are valid everywhere in the EU until Britain's definitive departure, and the Czech government will insist on this, PM Bohuslav Sobotka said on Sunday in reaction to British PM Theresa May's statement on a possible control of the movement of EU migrants by Britain.

"We will not agree with Britain introducing unilateral measures against workforce from the Czech Republic or other Central and Eastern European countries," Sobotka (Social Democrats, CSSD) said.

Earlier on Sunday, May told BBC that Britain will trigger the Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty in connection with Brexit by the end of March 2017.

During the following two years of negotiations about the conditions of Britain's departure from the EU, May intends to respect the British people's wish that the movement of migrants coming from the EU be controlled in Britain.

She said people wish her government to be capable of deciding who can enter Britain.

At the beginning of this week, Sobotka said after a joint meeting of the Czech and Slovak cabinets that the two countries are against a situation where Britain, outside the EU, would be granted access to the EU market while EU citizens would be discriminated against on the British labour market.

Such prospect is "unimaginable for the Czech Republic," he said.

Czech Foreign Minister Lubomir Zaoralek (CSSD) said Britain's position remains unclear even after May's statement on the Brexit start deadline on Sunday.

As far as the deadline of March 2017 is concerned, such deadlines have been announced by Britain repeatedly so far, Zaoralek said.

"No progress has been made in this respect," he said.

According to him, May's words indicate that Britain will not hurry.

"Until now, the British have not clearly said what they intend to do. The assertion that they will trigger it [Article 50] is one of their many assertions, and I actually do not know whether they will really do so, whether they will do so by the given deadline, how they will do it or what their position will be," Zaoralek said.

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