18:55 GMT06 August 2020
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    Both Sweden's Minister of EU Affairs and Trade Ann Linde and United Kingdom's Brexit Secretary David Davis said that they wanted the fate of the UK and EU nationals residing in the European Union and in the United Kingdom respectively to be the first issue on the negotiations agenda of Brexit.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Stockholm and London agree that the EU citizens living in the United Kingdom should be able to stay after Brexit and vise versa, but the deal on this may not be easy to reach, Sweden's Minister of EU Affairs and Trade Ann Linde said Tuesday.

    "We have the same vision that it should be possible for everybody to stay, but there are many details. It’s not so easy," the minister said, as quoted by The Local Sweden news outlet, after a meeting with United Kingdom's Brexit Secretary David Davis.

    According to the media, both Davis and Linde said that they wanted the fate of the UK and EU nationals residing in the European Union and in the United Kingdom respectively to be the first issue on the negotiations agenda.

    Linde also stressed that these people should not "become a bargaining chip in the Brexit negotiations."

    On Monday, The Guardian newspaper cited a leaked document by European parliament’s legal affairs committee which suggested that EU27 states may be influenced by London's harsh stance on immigration in their approach to the decisions on the future of the UK citizens in the European Union.

    Jeremy Corbyn, the leader of UK Labour Party, reportedly reacted to the revealed document by calling for "an end to this Hunger Games approach to Brexit negotiations, which gives no consideration to EU nationals in our country or British nationals living abroad." According to the newspaper, Corbyn urged his government to give a guarantee that EU citizens currently residing in the United Kingdom would be able to stay.

    Tighter control over immigration has been one of the main driving forces behind pro-Brexit campaign, but the approach does not sit well with Brussels, which considers freedom of movement one of the core EU principles.


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