EU referendum: Staying in 'will be Yes campaign'

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UK and EU flagsImage source, EPA

Voters in the UK's EU referendum will be asked to choose Yes if they want to remain in the union or No to leave.

Prime Minister David Cameron has said the in/out referendum will take place by 2017.

A bill paving the way for the referendum was included in the Queen's Speech.

BBC political correspondent Ross Hawkins said the precise wording of the question had not been confirmed.

But it is expected to allow those who want Britain to remain in the EU to style themselves as the Yes campaign, with the question expected to be along the lines of: "Should the UK remain a member of the EU?"

'Yes to remain'

Our correspondent said: "What we won't get [in the Queen's Speech], I'm told, is the absolute, finalised official version of that question. There's likely to be more discussion about it, but I'm led to believe that what we are heading towards is a question along the lines of whether the UK should remain in the EU.

"That is significant because it would allow those who want the status quo to continue once there has been a renegotiation, who want the UK to remain a member of the EU, to style themselves as the Yes campaign. Yes to stay in, Yes to remain.

"So it could be that there is some discussion of that over the coming days."

In the Queen's Speech, Mr Cameron said he would renegotiate the UK's membership and pursue reform of the European Union "for the benefit of all member states", pledging "early legislation" to pave the way for a referendum by the end of 2017.

Downing Street said this would give the public a "voice and a real choice on Europe".

It has also confirmed that members of the House of Lords and citizens of Commonwealth countries living in Gibraltar will be entitled to vote in the referendum - as well as UK nationals who have been living abroad for less than 15 years.