Scottish government: referendum alone if necessary

Case numbers rise sharply in Scotland

Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon wants to hold a new referendum on the independence of part of the country if necessary, without the government’s consent in London.

Sturgeon said at a news conference in Edinburgh today. Although a referendum should be legal, a Scottish National Party (SNP) politician stated that a British government was encountered that “respects neither democracy nor the rule of law”.

AP/PA/Russell Cheney

Sturgeon announced that she would therefore soon present a plan to circumvent the actually needed approval by London for another independence referendum. Sturgeon said the Scottish Parliament has an “incredible democratic mandate”.

headwind from london

Headwinds immediately from London: Prime Minister Boris Johnson believes “now is not the time to talk about a second independence referendum,” a spokesman said.

The regional government today issued the first of several documents used to promote Scottish independence. The part of the country with around 5.5 million residents may be more successful financially outside the United Kingdom, so the argument goes.

Other documents on currency, taxes and spending, defence, social affairs and EU membership and trade are expected to follow shortly.

According to Sturgeon’s current plans, a second independence referendum is to be held by the end of 2023 at the latest. In the first referendum in 2014, a majority of 55 percent of voters were against separation from the United Kingdom. However, the SNP and its coalition partner, the Scottish Greens, argue that leaving the European Union has radically changed the situation.

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