dglobalnews.com Independence or Tory Brexit: Scottish Parliament to debate country's future
Published: Sat, March 18, 2017
Global Media | By Cecelia Webb

Independence or Tory Brexit: Scottish Parliament to debate country's future

Independence or Tory Brexit: Scottish Parliament to debate country's future

Earlier on Thursday, Queen Elizabeth II gave royal assent to May's Brexit bill giving the prime minister official authority to trigger the Article 50 process to signal the start of Britain's exit from the EU.

It comes after May clashed with Sturgeon over the potential for a new independence referendum.

When the prime minister rejects that request, Sturgeon will accuse May of undermining Scottish sovereignty on behalf of a government with no mandate in Scotland, in the hope of doubling popular support for a new referendum to force May into a U-turn.

The Scottish National Party (SNP) leader suggested the referendum could take place between autumn 2018 and spring 2019 - before Britain is expected to leave the EU.

"Let there be no doubt - Scotland will have its referendum and the people of this country will have their choice".

That after the British prime minister said, "Now is not the time" for a second vote north of the border.

Addressing the Conservative Party's Spring Conference in the Welsh capital, May continued her war of words after the first minister of Scotland said she planned a new referendum to vote on a break-up of Britain.

Brexit bill approval overshadowed by Scotland's possible withdrawal from UK
The prime minister said her timetable of triggering formal negotiations by the end of March remained on track. Shadow Brexit secretary Sir Keir Starmer said Labour would be supporting the amendments.

The call for an independence referendum comes just two-and-a-half years after Scots voted to keep the union. One message from the independence and European Union referendums was that people wanted more control over their lives.

"What we need now is to unite, to come together as a country and to ensure that we can get the best deal for the whole of the United Kingdom".

"We will ask Parliament to agree that this choice should be exercised at a time when we know the terms of Brexit but before it is too late to take a different path". The only other way the reserved matters in the Scotland Act can be amended would be through an Act of the UK Parliament.

"Section 30 orders are made by the Queen, on the advice of the UK Government, having first been approved in draft by the Scottish Parliament, House of Commons and House of Lords".

I obviously welcome these commitments from the government, but it is clear that nationalists, of whatever stripe, both in Scotland and Northern Ireland, are interested in only one thing: their ideological obsession with 'independence'.

More than 60% of voters in Scotland opted to stay in the European Union in the Brexit referendum in June, while 52% voted for Brexit across Britain and Northern Ireland. Now she has changed her mind and appears to be trying to engage in some kind of horse-trading with the UK Government.

However, Tory, Labour and Liberal leaders in Scotland have expressed exasperation at a future vote. The country's First Minister has been no less robust in her counter-criticism, saying that "our efforts at compromise have been met with a brick wall of intransigence".

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