Britain scraps 'European Union' from its passports, despite Brexit delay

UK passport without words European Union

"There will be no difference for British citizens whether they are using a passport that includes the words "European Union" or a passport that does not include the words "European Union".

There were "no red lines" in the ongoing discussions, he told reporters, adding: "I expect we will reach some form of agreement".

Whether Britain will have left the bloc by then is uncertain.

Britain has begun issuing passports with the words "European Union" removed from the front cover - despite Brexit being delayed and uncertainty over when the country will leave the bloc.

The burgundy passports were introduced from March 30, the day after Britain was expected to leave the EU.

One person who received the passport said was "truly appalled" by the removal of the EU.

The Home Office was working under the assumption that Brexit day would have been 29 March.

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Some passports including the words "European Union" are still being issued and will continue for a short period until stock runs out, a Home Office spokeswoman said.

The EU-less passports were produced ahead of the decision to extend Article 50 after Parliament voted down Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit deal three times.

In a letter to European council president Donald Tusk, Mrs May asked for an extension until June 30 and agreed to make contingency plans to take part in European Parliament elections on May 23-26 if necessary.

But the other 27 members must give unanimous backing to any further postponement and are increasingly impatient at the paralysis in Westminster.

The decision to remove the words was made in anticipation of Britain leaving the European Union at the end of last month.

Both passports remain equally valid for travel, the Home Office said, and a new blue passport design would be rolled out from late 2019.

British passports have become ensnared in the country's Brexit divisions after the government announced in 2017 it would return to traditional blue passports "to restore national identity". However, she says if the House of Commons agrees a deal in time, the United Kingdom should be able to leave the EU before the European parliamentary elections on 23 May.

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