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This is because ir can be also irse, that is, a pronominal verb. In such cases, the verb is conjugated together with a personal form. Un verbo pronominal es el que usa los pronombres reflexivos (me, te, se, nos, os, se), generalmente es verbo intransitivo (no tiene objeto). Se usa el pronombre reflexivo para cambiar el sentido del verbo, acentuar ...


In this case the pronoun has inchoative function. That is, it indicates that the action begins to be realized. Voy a Francia. (I go to France) Me voy a Francia. (I'm going to France, now or at some point in past or future) Durmió. (She slept) Se durmió. (She fell asleep)


To further add to an already good answer by fedorqui let me say that you are right and "me voy" means "I'm leaving", however if you do not use the reflexive "me" and just say "voy" it is equivalent to "I'm coming" like when someone asks you to come. In response to a question like "¿quién va a ir a comprar la cerveza?" (who is going to buy the beer?) you ...

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