Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has invited the leaders of the UK’s devolved nations for crisis talks on the union;after the Scottish National Party (SNP) won its fourth straight parliamentary election.
The letter also invited the leaders to a summit to discuss plans to recover from the coronavirus pandemic;and work out how the UK’s four nations can work together to overcome “shared challenges.”
The PM’s letter comes after Sturgeon stated;after victory that the election results proved that a second independence vote for Scotland was “the will of the country”. She added that any London politician who stood;in the way would be “picking a fight with the democratic wishes of the Scottish people.”
Sturgeon further warned the PM not to block her push for a second Scottish independence referendum.
Final results of Scotland’s local elections show that the SNP won 64 of the 129 seats in the Scottish Parliament. Although it fell one seat short of securing an overall majority, the parliament still had;a pro-independence majority with the help of eight members of the Scottish Greens.
The United Kingdom is made;up of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, with devolved governments in the latter three countries.
Scottish independence referendum a ‘massive distraction’
Earlier, Britain’s Cabinet Office minister, Michael Gove dismissed a second referendum on Scottish independence as a “massive distraction”. He also repeatedly refused to say whether the UK government will seek to block a possible vote in court.
Gove noted in an interview that “it’s not an issue for the moment” and stressed that the national priority is recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.
He also averred that the UK and Scottish governments should “concentrate on the things that unite us” rather than “constitutional wrangling” over a second vote.
“If we get sucked into a conversation about referenda, constitutions and all the rest of it, then we are diverting attention from the issues that are most important to the people in Scotland and across the United Kingdom.
“Instead of concentrating on the things that divide, let’s concentrate on the things that unite and let’s concentrate on all of us to work together to serve the people that just voted for us.”
Addressing Gove’s inability to rule out the British government taking the issue to court, Nicola Sturgeon said it would be “absurd and completely outrageous” if the government went to court to block a second referendum.
“For this to end up in court, which is not something I ever want to see, it would mean a Conservative government had refused to respect the democratic wishes of the Scottish people and the outcome of a democratic election and tried to go to the Supreme Court to overturn Scottish democracy.”
She added that the SNP has not yet taken legal advice about holding another referendum but “wouldn’t rule out” legislation landing in the Scottish parliament at the start of next year.