Britain has started issuing new passports with the words "European Union" deleted from the burgundy cover. One Briton said she was "appalled" by the change, given the country hasn't yet left the bloc.
UK authorities have removed all references to the European Union from new British passports, despite Brexit being postponed.
Britain's original withdrawal was scheduled for March 29. Passports produced after that date don't have the "EU" label on their burgundy front cover.
The planned departure from the bloc has been complicated by division among British politicians, who are deadlocked over the terms of the divorce deal. The extended Brexit deadline of April 12 is also expected to be pushed back, after British Prime Minister Theresa May this week asked Brussels for a delay until June 30.
The British home secretary said some individual passports may still bear the words "European Union" on the cover until the remaining stocks are used up. But the old passports will no longer be given out once Britain formally leaves the bloc. Both passports are "equally valid for travel," the ministry added.
One new passport recipient, Susan Hindle Barone, expressed her dismay on Twitter, saying she was "truly appalled" by the change.
"I was just surprised: We're still members of the EU," she told the Associated Press news agency.
By the end of the year, the burgundy passports are scheduled to be replaced with the dark blue design British passports had before the EU came about. Britain switched to burgundy in 1988 in line with most other countries' passports in what was then the European Community.
nm/jlw (AFP, dpa)