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Brexit has expat Brits saying 'au revoir'

Tuesday, June 14, 2016 - 01:39

With a vote on British membership of the European Union planned for June 23, some expats living in France are taking drastic action to ensure they stay European by applying for French passports. Ivor Bennett reports.

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They certainly sound French. And as of 5 minutes ago, they are. Algerians, Turks and Mexicans among the country's newest citizens And, one Brit. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BRITISH NATIONAL WHO HAS JUST ACQUIRED FRENCH NATIONALITY, COLETTE TAYLOR-JONES, SAYING: "I think I feel more attached to Europe than to Britain which is why I chose to become French. Becoming French for me is becoming European." The timing is no coincidence. Colette's been able to live and work in France because she has an EU passport. But a Brexit may change that. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BRITISH NATIONAL WHO HAS JUST ACQUIRED FRENCH NATIONALITY, COLETTE TAYLOR-JONES, SAYING: "I actually was kind of worried that I would have to ask for what we call a 'titre de sejour' (residence permit) to be able to keep on living and working in a country where I've been my whole life." She's not the only one. Jack and Jonathan have both worked in France for 6 years. Though clearly still fond of their home comforts, neither would have any problem saying au revoir. (SOUNDBITE) (English) BRITISH NATIONAL APPLYING FOR FRENCH NATIONALITY, JACK MCNEILL, SAYING: "The prospect of having to apply for a residence permit or a visa, or not being able to just get on a train and go to Germany, that just made me think 'Well actually I want to have a French I.D. card so that I can feel at home in the place that I call home." (SOUNDBITE) (English) BRITISH NATIONAL APPLYING FOR FRENCH NATIONALITY, JONATHAN WRIGHT, SAYING: "I may decide in however many years to leave France and to go to another EU country and if my British passport didn't allow me to do that then it makes things more difficult." You may be able to take the British out of the EU. But not it seems the other way around.

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Brexit has expat Brits saying 'au revoir'

Tuesday, June 14, 2016 - 01:39