New independence vote ‘within 2yrs’ if Scots’ Brexit demands dismissed – Alex Salmond to RT (VIDEO)
If “arrogant” British Prime Minister Theresa May dismisses Scotland’s Brexit proposals there is likely to be a second Scottish independence referendum in the next two years, according to former First Minister Alex Salmond.
His successor as first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, on Tuesday unveiled proposals for Scotland’s future relations with Europe after Brexit.
Sturgeon’s policy paper, titled ‘Scotland’s Place in Europe,’ proposed the UK as a whole should remain in the single market and customs union. However, that would mean Britain signing up to the EU’s freedom of movement rules, a scenario that has been ruled out by May.
Sturgeon said if that option was not possible, Scotland could forge its own relationship with the EU and remain in the single market without the rest of the UK. That could mean a ‘hard border’ between Scotland and the rest of the country.
Speaking exclusively to RT, Salmond said the proposals would be “good for the Scottish economy, good for Scottish workers, good for Scottish jobs.” He said if the UK government was “at all interested in the welfare of the Scottish people” it would be adopting Sturgeon’s proposals.
“The ball is now firmly in the court of Theresa May, and we will see whether she is interested in the welfare of Scotland, or if she is going to continue with her arrogant, London-based dismissal of Scotland’s interests,” Salmond said.
May has pledged to look “very seriously” at the proposals, but the UK government has also previously warned that a special deal for Scotland is unrealistic.
In the June EU referendum, 62 percent of voters in Scotland backed ‘remain.’
Salmond says if the proposals are brushed off, a second independence referendum is “highly likely.”
“If Theresa May rejects the proposals, says she’s not interested in what Scotland has to say, says she couldn’t care less on the interests of Scotland and the Scottish people, then I think an independence referendum is very likely indeed.
“And in my view, that independence referendum should take place in the next two years, within the formal negotiating period of Brexit.”
Salmond says regardless of what happens with Brexit, there will “never be trade barriers between Scotland and England.”
“Scotland is England’s fourth-largest export market. Scotland buys more goods from England than China, Brazil, India, and indeed Russia combined.”
He added that the UK is in a “complete mess” with Brexit, and has “no friends” left in Europe.
“They stand isolated completely because of the chaos and confusion, and internal divisions of the Conservative Party.”