More than 120,000 sign up to campaign for associate EU citizenship

Protesters set off from at Hyde Park Corner during a pro-EU march. Photograph: John Stillwell/PA.

Protesters set off from at Hyde Park Corner during a pro-EU march. Photograph: John Stillwell/PA. - Credit: PA

A new campaign which is calling for Remainers to be able to opt in for associate EU citizenship and 'stay European' has reached more than 100,000 signatures.

A total of 121,000 people had signed up to the online campaign, which is aiming to allow British people to continue to declare themselves European when they opt in to become an associate citizen of the EU.

The campaigners are hoping to take the campaign to the next level by lobbying senior figures at the European Union to allow people to officially express interest in the scheme.

The Stay European group, which is a grassroots organisation, says the campaign differs to previous petitions because it will be an opportunity to build a movement for the cause.

Earlier this week the mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, pressed European Union and government officials to offer the scheme to pro-Europeans in Britain.

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He said: "Like so many Londoners, I am heartbroken that we are no longer a member of the European Union, but that doesn't mean our country's future can't be closely linked with the rest of Europe.

"The prime minister says his job is to bring the country together and move us forward and I cannot think of a better way of reconciling the differences between British voters who wanted to leave, and the millions of Londoners and British nationals who still feel and want to be European.

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"There would be support from millions of Londoners and British nationals who are devastated they are losing their rights as EU citizens.

"As the UK and EU start their next phase of negotiations, I want this issue of associate citizenship to be at the heart of talks about our future relationship."

- Sign up to the Stay European campaign online here

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