Scotland’s Nicola Sturgeon formally requests referendum

Scotland’s Nicola Sturgeon formally requests referendum


Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon smiles as she visits Genpact, an Indian multinational company, where she announced new jobs for Scotland Wednesday March 29, 2017. Scottish lawmakers have voted to seek a new referendum on independence, to be held within the next two years. The Scottish parliament on Tuesday voted 69-59 to authorize First Minister Nicola Sturgeon to ask the British government for an independence vote. (Andrew Milligan/PA via AP)

LONDON (AP) — Scotland’s first minister formally requested a second referendum on independence on Friday, declaring that Scots have the right to exercise their right of self-determination.

Nicola Sturgeon sent U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May a letter formally requesting the transfer of powers to allow a second vote. Sturgeon argued that Britain’s planned exit from the European Union’s single market is an outcome that will have significant implications on Scotland, which voted in favor of remaining in the EU.

“In these very changed circumstances, the people of Scotland must have the right to choose our own future — in short, to exercise our right of self-determination,” Sturgeon wrote.

The letter followed a 69-59 vote in the Scottish Parliament this week in favor of asking for an independence referendum. The Scots want the vote to take place between autumn 2018 and spring 2019.

Britain’s government has said it will deny the request. May has made clear she does not believe it is the time for another vote. Scottish voters rejected independence in a 2014 referendum that Sturgeon’s Scottish National Party called a once-in-a-generation vote. But Sturgeon says Brexit has altered conditions dramatically.

May’s Downing Street office confirmed that the letter had been received. It said it would respond in due course.

Sturgeon said there appeared to be “no rational reason” to deny a vote.

“It is my firm view that the mandate of the Scottish Parliament must be respected and progressed,” she wrote. “The question is not if, but how.”

“I hope that will be by constructive discussion between our governments.” Sturgeon continued. “However, if that is not yet possible, I will set out to the Scottish Parliament the steps I intend to take to ensure that progress is made towards a referendum.”

Some 62 percent of Scottish voters were in favor of remaining in the EU in last June’s plebiscite.

One Response to Scotland’s Nicola Sturgeon formally requests referendum

  1. Qandoo April 1, 2017 at 1:28 am #

    UK gov’t that enjoys assisting butchers/dictators in Africa who have been murdering and persecuting peaceful people who ask self-determination and basic democratic rights should be put under question for the way the will respond to this request by the Scotland.

    Let us see how this gov’t that provides brute regimes in Africa with Finance & material assistance handle its own internal political issues that are similar to what the Scottish people are asking.

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