quarta-feira, 8 de fevereiro de 2017

Support for Scottish independence spikes as May braces for second referendum

Support for Scottish independence spikes as May braces for second referendum
Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has repeatedly threatened to go back to the polls if Brexit deal doesn’t look after her country’s interests.

By ESTHER KING 2/8/17, 8:24 AM CET

British Prime Minister Theresa May believes Scotland is weeks away from demanding a second independence referendum, local media reported.

The British leader is coordinating with Conservatives in Scotland to hold talks with First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s Scottish National Party government in anticipation of the move, according to the Courier.

Downing Street was laying the groundwork for talks to make sure “we are calm and collected ahead of negotiations,” the Courier quoted a Scottish Conservative party source as saying.

The Scottish first minister is at odds with May over the government’s “hard Brexit” strategy, which includes limiting immigration and leaving the single market, and has repeatedly threatened to call a second vote on Scotland’s independence from the U.K. if she doesn’t think Scottish interests are being represented by Westminster.

Support for Scottish independence has grown since May’s Lancaster House speech and confirmation of the U.K.’s exit from the single market last month.

A Scottish Saltire (center) flies between a Union flag and a European Union flag in front of the
A total of 49 percent of Scots support independence, according to a BMG survey for The Herald, with 51 percent backing staying in the U.K. (undecided respondents were removed from the calculation). Most Scots opposed holding a new vote before the U.K. formally leaves the EU, the poll found.

“I’ll do what needs to be done to protect Scotland’s position,” Sturgeon said late last month. “We are running out of time for this process. It can’t go on indefinitely and it won’t go on indefinitely.”

May has made it clear that the devolved administrations will not get a decisive role in the U.K.’s divorce talks with the EU and won’t have a veto if they don’t like the deal she strikes. On Wednesday, she also pushed through a measure to ensure the U.K.’s EU exit deal is done on a “take it or leave it” basis.


Esther King  

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