Britons may need visas to travel to Europe after Brexit


The price of post-Brexit border control could be Britons having to apply for visas to travel to continental Europe, the Home Secretary has suggested.

Amber Rudd said reports that the European Commission is considering plans for a visa programme to operate across the Schengen free movement area is a "reminder" that the UK is in a "two-way negotiation" with the EU as it seeks its divorce from Brussels.

She agreed that people would be "surprised" if they had to apply for a short-term visa to visit countries like France, but insisted such a scheme could be rolled out.

Andrew Marr and Home Secretary Amber Rudd

She told the Andrew Marr Show on BBC One: "I think they (British citizens) would be surprised.

"I don't think it's particularly desirable but we don't rule it out because we have to be allowed a free hand to give the best negotiation."

Control over who comes to the UK was a central issue during the EU referendum campaign.

Rudd said the UK will be able to control its borders post-Brexit but stressed any measures introduced would have to be "reciprocal".

Home Secretary Amber Rudd

She said: "Once we leave the European Union we will have complete control over who comes into the UK from the EU and who doesn't, with one or two provisos of course.

"First of all, it's going to be reciprocal, we are going to have to work out what's in the UK's interests as well going to the European Union and what works for our economy and making sure that we get the right balance.

"Looking across the whole spectrum is what's going to be the guiding principle."