The Scottish National Party has warned Boris Johnson that he can’t keep Scotland in the UK against its will.
SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon has said the landslide victory the party won in the last week’s UK general election offers a mandate for a new independence referendum.
The party won 48 of Scotland’s 59 House of Commons seats.
On the BBCs Andrew Marr Show this morning, Ms Sturgeon said the UK can only continue by consent.
“If Boris Johnson is confident enough in the case for the union, then he should be confident enough to make that case and allow people to decide,” she said.
“Because if it is to continue, it can only be by the will and consent of the people of Scotland.”
“Scotland cannot be imprisoned within the United Kingdom against its will.”
“If Boris Johnson thinks saying no is the end of the matter then he is going to find himself completely and utterly wrong”
— BBC Politics (@BBCPolitics) December 15, 2019
In a phone call on Friday, Mr Johnson told Ms Sturgeon that he remained opposed to a second referendum – and claimed majority of people in Scotland agreed with him.
This morning, Ms Sturgeon said she won’t be taking on for an answer.
“That won’t hold,” she said.
“Actually I said this to him on Friday night on the telephone, if he thinks saying no is the end of the matter, he is going to find himself completely and utterly wrong.
“It is quite a fundamental point of democracy. You can’t hold Scotland in the union against its will.
“You can’t lock us in a cupboard and turn the key and hope that everything goes away.
“If the United Kingdom is to continue then it can only be by consent.”
On the Sophie Ridge on Sunday show on Sky News this morning, Tory Cabinet Minister Michael Gove said he could “absolutely” rule out a second referendum.
“We had the referendum on whether or not Scotland should be separate from the United Kingdom in 2014,” he said.
“We were told that that referendum would settle the question for a generation.
He said last week’s election had shown “what happens when politicians try to overturn a referendum result.”
Ms Sturgeon said she fully expects the Tories to “rage against the reality” of what last week’s election means for the UK but insisted:
“Ultimately they are going to have to face up to and confront that reality, because the will of the Scottish people cannot be ignored.
“That is just the simple fact of the matter.”