Home U.K Macron backed Sturgeon in independence row: 'Long live European Scotland'

Macron backed Sturgeon in independence row: 'Long live European Scotland'

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Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has been determined in her pursuit of Scottish independence and opposition to Brexit in recent years. Last month, Ms Sturgeon reportedly demanded the EU flag is flown from Scottish government buildings every day. This order came in updated official guidance over which flags should be flown from buildings run by the Scottish government and its agencies. A Scottish government spokesman said: “The EU flag is flown to reflect the overwhelming vote of the people of Scotland to remain in Europe, and as a mark of solidarity with the hundreds of thousands of EU citizens who continue to call Scotland home despite Brexit.”

Ms Sturgeon’s relationship with EU leaders has strengthened in recent years, with prominent figures expressing an openness to Scotland rejoining.

This was seen when French President Emmanuel Macron was asked about Scottish independence in March 2017.

In an interview with French media site Explicite, Mr Macron was asked if he is in favour of Scottish independence.

He replied that is isn’t his place to say, but added that Scotland will be eager to follow its own path.

When the journalist asked the eventual French President is he supported a free Scotland, Mr Macron responded: “Vive l’Écosse Européenne” (long live European Scotland).

Mr Macron is one of many European leaders to praise First Minister Sturgeon and offer support for Scotland rejoining the EU.

In July 2019 SNP MP Alyn Smith drew parallels between Ms Sturgeon and European Commission President Urusla von der Leyen during an interview with the Brussels chief.

He said: “I’d like to invite you to Scotland to come and see our very pro-European sentiment. You’ll be very welcomed by our very strong First Minister who’s a very strong pro-European lady.”

Ms Von der Leyen claimed she was “a fan” of the Scottish National Party (SNP) leader.

She responded: “I know, I’m a fan of hers. And as I have a child studying in the UK, I know first-hand how the debates are. So, respect and good luck.”

Mr Smith also asked her to confirm that “the UK could revoke Article 50 up to the very last minute without political consequences and that the door is open for us to do so”.

Ms Von der Leyen said: “Yes, the door is open, because we want you in. And the political consequences are way harder when it comes the other way round – so, as we’ve said, we want you in, we are prepared for whatever happens …but if we are to choose, we want you in.”

READ MORE: Sturgeon’s unearthed comments put Scotland’s EU place ‘in danger’

“Nicola Sturgeon comes across as a genuine person, politically astute and someone whose word can be trusted, whereas Boris Johnson comes across very quickly as someone you can’t trust.

“I can imagine Nicola Sturgeon being president of the European Commission, she seems to be much closer to the centre of gravity of European politics than Boris Johnson is.”

Despite the growing enthusiasm in Europe, recent polling suggests support for independence has taken a dip after months of momentum.

A Savanta ComRes poll found 46 percent of the 1,015 Scots polled were in favour of remaining part of the UK, while 43 percent supported independence and 10 percent were undecided.

With undecided voters excluded, 52 percent to 48 percent of Scots indicated that they were in favour of the Union.



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