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No 10 fear other parts of the UK would leave if Scotland becomes independent says academic

09 Oct 2022 3 minute read
Prime Minister Liz Truss. Picture by Stefan Rousseau / PA Wire

No 10 fears that other parts of the UK will start breaking away if Scotland ever becomes independent, an academic has said.

Professor Anand Menon – director of the think tank UK in a Changing Europe – was speaking at a fringe event on the border arrangements of an independent Scotland during the SNP conference in Aberdeen.

He told party members there would be a fear that should an independent Scotland be successful in the European Union, that could act as a “role model” for other parts of the UK.

In the same meeting, Constitution Secretary Angus Robertson said Scotland’s success as a member of the EU would be a boost for the rest of the UK, allowing the country to be a “bridge” to explain “the needs, interests, concerns and expectations of the rest of the United Kingdom”.

Mr Robertson told the event: “I actually think it’s going to be really important for the government of the rest of the United Kingdom that Scotland succeeds in that wider European context and Scotland can be a conduit, can be a bridge, in explaining the needs, interests, concerns and expectations of the rest of the United Kingdom as a member state of the European Union,” he said.

“We are going to be really important for the rest of the United Kingdom, and not just in trading terms.”

Nervous

Prof Menon said he had to “take issue slightly” with the Constitution Secretary.

“We can dream of a world in which an independent Scotland’s success is wanted as much in London as it is in Edinburgh,” he said. “That’s not the world of politics I’m in.

“If you think back to Brexit, one of the reasons why people thought the EU would play hardball was this notion of a fear of emulation.

“There would be a fear of emulation in London about (Scottish independence) because over the water you have Northern Ireland.

“I think Northern Ireland is a way off a border poll as yet, but if Scotland leaves and is successful within the European Union, it would represent quite a powerful role model, and that will make people in London nervous.”

Angus Robertson MSP, Cabinet Secretary for the Constitution, External Affairs and Culture during the SNP conference at The Event Complex Aberdeen

Border

Meanwhile, another academic told the event there would have to be checks on the border between Scotland and England in the event of an independent Scotland joining the European Union.

The issue of the land border proved one of the most controversial in the lead-up to the first independence referendum in 2014.

Professor Nicola McEwen told the event: “(The border) is the biggest challenge in a sense from an independence perspective because it would become, under EU membership, an EU external border.”

As such, the government of an independent country would have certain “responsibilities and obligations” for the goods coming into the country.

“There is no getting away from the fact that there would have to be border checks,” she added.


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21 Comments
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I.Humphrys
I.Humphrys
1 month ago

We will be Independent whatever Scotland does; it’s called momentum .

David Charles pearn
David Charles pearn
1 month ago
Reply to  I.Humphrys

GOD willing

Frank
Frank
1 month ago

Roll on!! We all know the union is a farce and a charade. A few people in Westminster telling the rest of us what we can and can’t do is not going to work much longer.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
1 month ago

However did a twisted and sadistic Gothic water spout become the last Tory Prime Minister of England…Fat Shanks’ practical joke on a country he must loathe…The scavenging vultures gather round to strip the carcass clean. They intend to sell 65 million people into slavery…

Mr Williams
Mr Williams
1 month ago

Why would we want to stay in a union in which we are shown nothing but contempt by those in charge (who we don’t even vote for!)?

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
1 month ago

As Frosty said – they are just scared of the humilation. We are denied independence to spare their hurt pride. Whether we’d be better off or not is irrelevant. Whatever they feel – it is too late, the Union will end, its destiny is sealed.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago

Why would there have to be a hard border between England and Scotland, or between England and Wales, but not with Ireland? Where would the justification be for that?

Last edited 1 month ago by Rob
Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob

Yorkshire have always seen themselves as apart from England (the nation of which I am self-declared prince – in the same way William Windsock is self declared prince of our nation). They are, after all, yr Hen Ogledd. Perhaps if we remind them of that, they might seek independence too, then we have a land bridge to Scotland. I wouldn’t unite with Yr Hen Ogledd though. They are after all about 8 million in number and – as evidenced by the new blue wall – very keen on Tories and not on foreginers

Last edited 1 month ago by Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
Y Cymro
Y Cymro
1 month ago

Liz Truss & Whitehall cannot keep the constituent parts of the UK together by force by removing piece by piece Scottish & Welsh devolution. And If the people of Scotland choose independence it’s their democratic right to do so, as is it Wales whenever we choose a similar path. End of And what makes me angry are the right-wing Brexiteers who whined for decades about the European Union citing “loss of soverignty & power” now act like tinpot dictators by attacking our Senedd Cymru. Undemocratically repealed Welsh law protecting striking Welsh workers. Passed legislation at Westminster to deliberately interfer with… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Y Cymro
The original mark
The original mark
1 month ago

Why does it take an academic to state the obvious?

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
1 month ago

A famous institution is the University of the Bleeding Obvious…

George Atkinson
George Atkinson
1 month ago

Oh no, the poor invaders.

Christine Jones
Christine Jones
1 month ago

Once Scotland gains its freedom then there will be a domino effect, not just across the islands of Britain and Ireland, but across mainland Europe. What always amazes me is why the people of England are sleeping. Journalists should ask them whether they see themselves as English and do they believe in self-determination? If so, then surely an English Parlaiment should be established.

Windy
Windy
1 month ago

Scotland will become an independent nation sooner or later.
brexit has made Irish unification a logical outcome.
are the people of Wales willing to be stuck with the lame horse pariah that is England I hope not ,unfortunately they are led by what they see on Toryvision or read in newspapers.
They need to be shown how to join up the dots.

Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
Y Tywysog Lloegr a Moscow
1 month ago

We will not be “leaving”. This is our island. We will simply be cancelling our membership of a terribly incompetent club.

Rob
Rob
1 month ago

So what would be left of the Union if Scotland leaves. England, Wales and Northern Ireland, or England and Wales?. What would be the name of this country,. the flag, the anthem. Why would we want to be the only nation in Western Europe that is not independent?

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