Brussels, June 29: Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on Wednesday met European Parliament President Martin Schulz here to discuss Scotland’s future in the EU amid Britain’s decision to leave the bloc. “I’ve set out very clearly Scotland’s desire to protect our relationship with the EU but I don’t underestimate the challenges that lie ahead,” said Sturgeon. For the first time in 43 years, the summit was not attended by a representative of the United Kingdom, Efe news reported. Sturgeon said it was too early in the process “to know Scotland’s future”.
As many as 62 percent in Scotland opted to remain in the EU in last week’s referendum. Across the UK, however, 52 per cent voted to leave, meaning England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales are all due to leave the 48-tion bloc. This sparked calls for a new referendum on Scottish independence, an option that Sturgeon has said was “on the table”. Scotland had voted “no” to leaving the UK in an historic independence referendum in September 2014.
Sturgeon said these prelimiry meetings with the EU leaders were to make “people understand that Scotland, unlike other parts of the UK, doesn’t want to leave the EU”.
Schulz said he “listened carefully and learned a lot”. He did not make a statement on his opinion on Scotland’s future in the EU. (IANS)