British ambassador to Cyprus tells expats: ‘no change to your rights for next two years’


One favourable result of the Brexit trigger seems to have been that Her Majesty’s High Commissioner in Nicosia, Matthew Kidd, has been moved to communicate direct with UK nationals living in the TRNC – a rare event in recent years.

In the following video, circulated to media in Cyprus popular with expats, the ambassador reassures all UK nationals about the effects of Article 50, at least over the next two years.

Mr Kidd tells Cyprus’ expat community, thought to number 80,000 island-wide, that “one of the key priorities of the negotiations” will be to secure their status and that the British government wants this to be “an early topic of discussion in the negotiations”.

He adds that their “current rights” are not affected by the triggering of Article 50 and two year exit process, and that they can continue to “live and work here [in Cyprus], to send your children to school here and have access to healthcare and get your pension are all the same today as they were yesterday.” 

In the same clip, the High Commissioner also announced a series of “town hall meetings around the island” to meet and discuss the implications of Brexit with expats. Meetings north of the Green Line will give an estimated 15,000 British expats a chance to also input on developments and share their concerns about their future.

Expats can follow updates via the British High Commission in Nicosia’s Facebook page, UK in Cyprus, or the UK Government website’s Cyprus section.

The British High Commissioner Matthew Kidd had previously come under fire from expats and Turkish Cypriots for failing to attend a memorial service in Girne in November 2014. The service of Dedication was held at the Old British Cemetery, including the unveiling of a monument dedicated to the 62 police officers who lost their lives while serving during the Cyprus Emergency between 1955 and 1960.