Scots reject independence narrowly, survey finds

Scots reject independence narrowly, survey finds

Scottish voters are divided over their country’s independence, with supporters of a break with the UK leaving behind supporters of a break with the UK, according to a poll released on Thursday, two days after plans for a 2023 referendum were announced.

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“If a referendum were held tomorrow, 44% of Scots would say they would vote yes, while 46% say they would vote no,” said Savanta Comeres, who polled for The Scotsman newspaper.

“When we remove these, it gives an overall turnout of 51% for no and 49% for yes”, it underlined.

For Chris Hopkins, director of policy research at Savanta Comres, this latest survey “only serves to highlight the divide within Scotland”.

On Tuesday Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon reaffirmed her determination to hold a new independence referendum, aimed at autumn 2023.

For this referendum to be held, Mrs Sturgeon, leader of the independence party SNP, must obtain the agreement of the British government, which strongly opposes it.

Scots had already been consulted on the subject in 2014 and voted 55% to remain within the United Kingdom. Based on this vote, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson argues that such a referendum can only happen “once in a generation”.

The SNP, however, believes Brexit is a game-changer, with Scots opposing it 62% in 2016. The purpose of the SNP is for Scotland to join the European Union as an independent state.

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The Supreme Court was asked to determine whether the Scottish Parliament had the power to legislate to hold this referendum without the consent of the British government.

In the event of a court defeat, Nicola Sturgeon has warned that she will use the next general election, scheduled for 2024, as a “genuine referendum”, and that her party will campaign on only one issue: “Scotland must be made”. Will it be a free country?

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