Labour hints it would KEEP freedom of movement after Brexit

Labour hints it would KEEP freedom of movement after Brexit

November 21, 2019

Labour hints it would KEEP freedom of movement even if the UK leaves the EU as Jeremy Corbyn again refuses to say whether he is for or against Brexit

  • Jeremy Corbyn today launched the Labour Party’s general election manifesto
  • The Labour leader confirmed that his party would hold a second referendum
  • He said if UK voted to stay in the EU then ‘freedom of movement would continue’
  • Also said if the UK backed Brexit again the issue will be ‘subject to negotiations’
  • Mr Corbyn also vowed to grant EU nationals in UK automatic right to remain here

Labour today hinted it would keep freedom of movement even if the UK leaves the European Union as Jeremy Corbyn again refused to say whether he was for or against Brexit. 

Mr Corbyn launched his party’s 2019 general election manifesto at an event in Birmingham as he confirmed he will offer voters a second referendum on Britain’s divorce from Brussels if he forms the next government. 

But he risked Leave voter fury as his 107-page vision for the UK finally set out the party’s position on border control. 

The manifesto states that if Britain votes to stay in the bloc then ‘freedom of movement would continue’. 

It then states that if the nation confirms that it wants to quit the EU then freedom of movement ‘will be subject to negotiations’.

The blueprint then notes the ‘social and economic benefits that free movement has brought’ and that ‘we will seek to protect those rights’. 

That appears to be a clear hint that uncontrolled migration from the EU to the UK could continue under a Labour government even after Brexit. 

Jeremy Corbyn today launched Labour’s general election manifesto at an event in Birmingham

Mr Corbyn’s vision for the UK continues a pledge to keep freedom of movement if the UK stays in the EU but it also says the issue would be ‘subject to negotiations’ it Brexit takes place following a second referendum

Meanwhile, Mr Corbyn refused point blank to say whether he wanted the UK to Leave or Remain as he insisted he is focused on trying to ‘bring people together’ on the divisive issue of Brexit. 

Activists at Labour’s annual conference in September voted for the party to commit to a manifesto pledge to maintain and extend free movement.  

The Labour leadership has decided to ignore that vote but has instead agreed a policy which is much softer than the one it campaigned on at the 2017 general election. 

That manifesto stated: ‘Freedom of movement will end when we leave the European Union.’ 

But the 2019 document states: ‘If we remain in the EU, freedom of movement would continue. 

‘If we leave, it will be subject to negotiations, but we recognise the social and economic benefits that free movement has brought both in terms of EU citizens here and UK citizens abroad – and we will seek to protect those rights.’ 

The manifesto also pledges to grant the three million EU citizens who live in the UK an automatic right to continue living and working here after Brexit. 

There is also a commitment to end the indefinite detention of migrants and to ‘review the alternatives to the inhumane conditions of detention centres’. 

Mr Corbyn has been repeatedly accused of sitting on the fence on Brexit after he steered Labour towards its current neutral stance on the issue.

Today he again refused to say if he wanted the UK to Leave or Remain in the bloc. 

Asked to give a ‘straight answer’ to the question he said: ‘I have made it very clear that we will negotiate within three months of taking office a credible option of leaving the EU that doesn’t tear up every trade agreement and does protect the trade this country has with Europe. 

‘After all, roughly 50 per cent of all trade is with the European Union and so that would obviously be protected in that offer but it would be an offer to leave the European Union with a trade agreement that doesn’t damage all of our public services and our rights at work.

‘We would put that alongside Remain in a referendum and my government would accept and carry out the result of that. 

‘I think it is responsible to try to bring people together. I think it is a responsible and serious approach to it.’

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