08:43 GMT +330 May 2017
Live
    Pro Independence supporters waves the Scottish flag during a rally in George Square in Glasgow, Scotland, on September 19, 2015.

    MEPs Back 'Swift, Smooth, and Orderly' EU Accession for Independent Scotland

    © AFP 2017/ Andy Buchanan
    Europe
    Get short URL
    2353310

    Fifty politicians from across Europe have signed a letter calling for the "swift, smooth, and orderly" application for EU membership for a Scotland independent of the United Kingdom, following the triggering of Article 50 of the Treaty of Lisbon, allowing for the UK to exit the EU.

    The letter, an initiative of Scottish Green Party Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) Ross Greer and German Green MEP Terry Reintke, is addressed to Holyrood — the home of the Scottish Parliament — and signed by parties from across the political spectrum from the EU Parliament, national and regional parliaments, assemblies and senates.

    ​It also gives a commitment to assist an independent Scotland with a "swift, smooth, and orderly" application for European Union membership.

    Last month Green MSPs voted for Scotland to have its say over the Tories' Hard Brexit, giving the Scottish Government a mandate to seek permission from the UK government to hold an independence referendum.

    In the Brexit referendum, June 23, 2016, although the UK-wide result was 52 percent to leave, in Scotland it was 67.2 to remain and Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said she wants a second referendum by the summer of 2019, giving Scotland the chance to leave the United Kingdom and remain part of the EU.

    "With continuing uncertainty and an absolute lack of any clear plan from the UK government, what's becoming clear is that there is a tremendous amount of goodwill from across the continent towards Scotland's European aspirations. People in Scotland were told to vote against independence if they wanted to stay in the EU and now we know how wrong that was. Independence is the only way to secure a European future for Scotland," said Greer, the youngest ever MSP, elected at the 2016 election at the age of 21 years old.

    ​"Furthermore, we were told that Spain would block an independent Scotland's bid for EU membership and that we'd face being placed at the back of a mythical queue.

     Now we know that those 'No' campaign arguments are not true. The only thing standing in Scotland's way to forging links with Europe is the Westminster government. Our parliament has voted to give the people a choice over their own future and no Tory government at Westminster should stand in the way of that," he said.

    'Shocking and Incredibly Sad'

    In the letter, the politicians argue that UK Prime Minister Theresa May's pursuit of a Hard Brexit does not take into account the preferences of Scottish citizens in the withdrawal process. 

    "If Scotland were to become an independent country and decided to seek to maintain European Union membership, we offer our full support to ensure the transition is as swift, smooth, and orderly as possible. Scotland would be most welcome as a full member of the European Union, with your five million European citizens continuing to benefit from the rights and protections we all currently enjoy," the letter states.

    "The inflammatory language we have witnessed, just one week after the official triggering of Article 50, is shocking and incredibly sad. Now should be the time to seek common ground, not stir up hatred and division," said Reintke.

    Related:

    Scotland May Do Better on Its Own as EEA Member, Analyst Says
    Spain 'Not Happy' About Independent Scotland, But 'Not Inflexible' Either
    Theresa May in Battle to Keep Scotland in UK, Britain Out of EU
    Sturgeon: Independent Scotland to Keep Pound, Apply for EU Membership
    Tags:
    indyref 2.0, Hard Brexit, MEPs, Brexit, EU membership, referendum, independence referendum, Scottish referendum, Holyrood, UK Parliament, European Parliament, Scottish Parliament, European Union, Nicola Sturgeon, Theresa May, Europe, United Kingdom, Scotland
    Community standardsDiscussion
    Comment via FacebookComment via Sputnik
    • Сomment