Scottish Prime Minister Picks Date for New Independence Referendum

Scottish Prime Minister Nicola Sturgeon has designated October 19, 2023 as the date for a new independence referendum to be held. If it is up to the Prime Minister, the population will indicate on that date whether Scotland should secede from the United Kingdom or not. This is a non-binding referendum. In a plebiscite in 2014, the Scots still voted to remain part of the UK.

According to British media, Sturgeon has written to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to formally seek permission for the referendum. Westminster is reluctant for the time being. Several times Johnson refused to move along and also recently London announced that now is โ€œnot the timeโ€ for a new referendum. But even if that permission does not come, Sturgeon wants to organize a plebiscite, she said.

However, she said that the ballot procedure must take place within the framework of the constitution. To make this happen, she wants the British Supreme Court to address the issue first. That should determine whether Scotland is allowed to organise a referendum without Londons permission. Whether the Supreme Court agrees Sturgeon is by no means certain.

In 2014, the Scots were also able to speak out on whether they wanted to become independent from the United Kingdom. A majority of 55 per cent then indicated that they wanted to stay with the UK. After that, Sturgeons party SNP said that a new referendum would not be reorganized โ€œwithin one generationโ€. The SNP leader is regularly reminded of this ruling, but according to Sturgeon, Brexit has changed the political situation in such a way that a new referendum is warranted.

At the time of the Brexit referendum, 62 percent of Scots voted to remain in the EU. During the Brexit negotiations, Sturgeon has always insisted that Scotland did not want to leave the EU.

Sturgeon has been strengthened in its struggle since last year. At that time, the nationalist parties achieved a majority in the regional elections in the Scottish Parliament. Sturgeons SNP then captured 64 of the 129 seats. โ€œWhat I will never allow is Scottish democracy to become a prisoner of Boris Johnson or another Prime Minister,โ€ she said.