British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s father Stanley confirmed plans on Thursday to seek French citizenship when British free movement in the EU ends under the Brexit pact delivered by his son.
Speaking to French RTL radio in French, Stanley Johnson said: “It’s not about becoming French. If I understand correctly, I’m French! My mother was born in France, her mother was completely French like her grandfather.
“For me, it’s a matter of getting what I already have and I’m very happy about it,” the 80-year-old added.
The father of politicians who ended Britain’s 47-year membership of the EU was among the first officials to be appointed to Brussels after Britain joined the EU in 1973.
He worked for the European Commission and was a Member of the European Parliament.
He originally campaigned for leaving the EU before changing a year after the UK voted to leave the Union in 2016.
“I will always be European, that’s for sure,” he told RTL.
“You can not tell English: you are not European. Europe is more than the internal market, it is more than the European Union.”
“With that said, it is important to have such a link with the EU,” he said, apparently referring to an EU passport.
His plans to apply for a French passport had already been revealed by his daughter Rachel in a book published in March.
She wrote that her grandmother was born in Versailles and said that if her father received French citizenship, she would also like to become French.
Britain’s cumbersome departure from the European Union takes effect at 2300 GMT when an 11-month transition period after Brexit ends.