Scotland likely to decide to get divorced from UK

Updated: 00:00 GMT, Jan 1, 1970 | Published: 05:44 GMT, Jun 25, 2016 |

A second Scottish independence referendum is “highly likely” and should take place before Britain leaves the European Union, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said on Friday (June 24).

Scotland voted to stay in the EU by 62 to 38 percent in a referendum on Thursday (June 23), putting it at odds with the United Kingdom as a whole, which voted 52-48 in favour of leaving.

“I think an independence referendum is now highly likely,” Sturgeon told reporters in Edinburgh, saying she had a duty to respond to the democratic decision taken by the people of Scotland.

“I intend to take all possible steps and explore all options to give effect to how people in Scotland voted, in other words to secure our continuing place in the EU and in the single market,” she added.

Sturgeon said many Scots who had voted against independence for that reason were now re-assessing their decision.

Scots rejected independence by 55-45 percent in a referendum in September 2014, though the vote energised Scottish politics and support for Sturgeon’s Scottish National Party (SNP).