Scotland's Sturgeon vows to hold independence referendum in 2023
Scotland cannot hold an independence referendum without the consent of the UK government.
After the Supreme Court ruled that the Scottish government is not allowed to hold a second independence referendum without the UK's government approval, Scottish First Minister and SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon said on Wednesday that the next UK general elections will be turned into a de facto vote on independence.
Sturgeon further said that the court's ruling revealed the "myth" that Scotland could voluntarily leave the UK, and accused Westminster of showing "contempt" for Scotland's democratic will.
SNP Convenor in Orkney, Robert Leslie, likewise said: "The myth that this is a voluntary partnership of nations that we’re in went out of the window with that ruling."
The ruling thus pushed the Scottish government to launch an independence referendum on separating after more than 300 years which will be scheduled on 19 October 2023, nearly ten years after Scots narrowly opted to remain in the pre-Brexit UK.
1/ While disappointed by it I respect ruling of @UKSupremeCourt - it doesn't make law, only interprets it.— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) November 23, 2022
A law that doesn't allow Scotland to choose our own future without Westminster consent exposes as myth any notion of the UK as a voluntary partnership & makes case for Indy
"We must and we will find another democratic, lawful, and constitutional means by which the Scottish people can express their will. In my view, that can only be an election," Sturgeon said.
Some of the campaigners who were rooting for separation outside of court were met with anti-independence supporters at a rally outside the Scottish parliament waving placards including one reading: "We want to stay in the UK."
WE WANT TO STAY IN THE UK 🇬🇧 #SupremeCourt #TimeForScotland #Indyref2 pic.twitter.com/7w3PpWITX0— A Force For Good 🏴🇬🇧 (@UKaForceForGood) November 23, 2022
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said the court ruling was "clear and definitive" and called to enhance cooperation among politicians, both from the North and South.
SNP leaders criticized Sunak for his lack of democratic accountability after he was voted prime minister only via the votes of his Tory peers.
Read more: UK Supreme Court rejects Scottish independence referendum bid