UK expats in Spain submit petition for UK parliamentary representation

Published:  7 Jul at 6 PM
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Businesses, the media and campaigners are uniting in protest following Theresa May’s shocking statement during which she refused to give any guarantees over expat rights within EU member states.

May, at present the UK government’s Home Secretary and tipped to become the next PM, was slammed in print and online for her lack of concern for the lives of UK citizens at present in Europe and EU citizens at present in the UK. It’s suspected that the over four million expats in total are destined only to be used as weapons in Brexit negotiations.

Spanish expat campaign group AUAN leader Maura Hillen was one of the first to react to May’s announcement with anger. Her AUAN group has been active in fighting for the property rights of British expats in Spain, and she’s now backing a petition started by the Olive Press in order to demand the UK government serves the interests of the 1.3 million UK expats living in Europe.

The petition, similar to one started two weeks ago in France, is demanding an official representative acting on expats’ behalf in the UK parliament. Vice President of Andalusia’s British Chamber of Commerce Derek Langley is supporting the campaign and is putting the petition in front of the Chamber’s members later this week.

English language media companies in Spain are also in full support of the petition, with Essential’s publisher Iain Blackwell and Euro Weekly News’s publisher Michel Euesden both on board. Costa Blanca editor Jack Troughton said his publication has always stood up for expats, adding it’s time for UK politicians to protect expat citizens’ rights and give guarantees about their futures.

Tens of thousands of British citizens who’ve lived in Europe for more than 15 years were unable to vote in the referendum, and many thousands more lost their votes due to mistakes made by the Electoral Commission, registration problems and postal chaos. Add to that total the unknown numbers of Leave voters who’ve since changed their minds and the fact that the result is not legally binding, and you have pressing reasons why a second referendum should be called, giving opportunities to vote for all affected by the result, no matter where in the EU they’re living.
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