Dutch nationals who take British citizenship to avoid having to leave the UK after Brexit will be stripped of their Netherlands passports due to existing limits on dual nationality, the country’s prime minister has said.
About 100,000 Dutch nationals living in Britain face an uncertain future after March 2019. The UK and EU are yet to reconcile their differences on the citizens’ rights issue, with Brussels describing the British government’s initial offer as vague and inadequate.
Dutch citizens in the UK who have considered becoming British to avoid residency problems once Britain leaves the EU were warned by Mark Rutte on Monday that applying for dual nationality was not an option.
“Countering dual nationality remains one of this cabinet’s policies,” the prime minister said, in response to a petition with 22,000 signatures calling for a government rethink.
“This is because having a nationality is always associated with an actual link to a certain country. If at some point there is a question of a connection to the Netherlands or if the link to another country has become stronger than that with the Netherlands, Dutch nationality will end.”
Rutte made his intervention after the launch of an information campaign to advise citizens that they will be required to renounce their original nationality should they seek to become British.
The Dutch government has told its citizens that if they “have more than one nationality, it is not always clear what your rights are”.
The Dutch security and justice ministry website says: “For instance, your country of origin may require you to do compulsory military service. The Dutch government wants to limit dual nationality as much as possible.
“If you have only one nationality, it will be clear what your rights are. That is why people who want to acquire Dutch nationality through naturalisation are, as a rule, required to give up their other nationality if possible. This is called the renunciation…