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Monday 20th
posted by Zoe Streatfield in Britain

SNP leader warns May not to stand in her way

SCOTTISH First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has warned Prime Minister Theresa May that standing in the way of a second independence referendum would “shatter beyond repair” any notion that the United Kingdom is a partnership of equals.

Closing the SNP’s spring conference, she said that if the parliament at Holyrood votes for a second referendum, the demand for another ballot will become “the will of the democratically elected Parliament of Scotland.”

Ms Sturgeon said she had been met with a “brick wall of intransigence” in her negotiations with Ms May, and warned the PM that “if she shows the same condescension and inflexibility to other countries as she has to Scotland, then the Brexit negotiations will hit the rocks.”

She also lashed out at Labour, calling the party an “embarrassing shambles of an opposition.”

Ms Sturgeon branded the British government’s scrapping of the Dubs Amendment, established to resettle lone child refugees in Britain, as “inhumane.”

The SNP manifesto for the 2016 Holyrood election set out the prospect of a second independence referendum if there was a “material change in circumstances” in Britain such as Scotland being removed from the EU “against its wishes.”

Ms Sturgeon said that if the vote is passed in the Scottish Parliament, then a “fair, legal, agreed referendum — on a timescale that will allow the people of Scotland an informed choice ... becomes the will of the democratically elected Parliament of Scotland.”

However, the latest poll shows support for splitting from Britain may have slightly declined.

A Panelbase survey for the Sunday Times and LBC found 56 per cent of Scots would vote to stay in the UK, up 1 per cent on 2014’s vote. It also found 51 per cent were opposed to another referendum in “the next few years.”

The SNP minority administration is expected to back the First Minister’s call for a Section 30 order to be granted with the help of the Scottish Greens on Wednesday, with the Scottish Parliament thereby formally requesting that Westminster grants it the authority to hold a legally binding referendum.