Thu Apr 6, 2017 09:48AM
Scottish MEP David Martin
Scottish MEP David Martin

The UK will cease to exist if it fails to address the concerns of Scotland and other devolved nations before withdrawing from the European Union, a Scottish member of the European Parliament has warned.

Speaking during the European Parliament’s Wednesday debate on Brexit, Labour MEP David Martin warned against UK Prime Minister Theresa May’s lack of respect for Scotland’s demands with regards to the issue.

May has turned down Scotland’s request for a role in the EU negotiations, insisting that the UK will be leaving the bloc as one country.

Although Britain as whole voted to leave the EU, Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to stay in the bloc.

May’s policies pushed Scottish First Minister to launch a new independence campaign, more than two years after a failed attempt to secede from the UK. May has firmly rejected the possibility of another independence bid.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May

As Scotland’s longest-serving MEP, Martin said Wednesday that May’s attitude jeopardized the UK’s integrity.

“In September 2014 I voted to keep Scotland in the UK. In June 2016 I voted to keep the UK in the European Union. Today I face the reality that Brexit will remove my country from one union and leave the other hanging by a thread,” he said.

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“Scotland voted overwhelmingly to remain in the EU. Edinburgh - a city I have represented in this House for 33 years - voted 75 per cent to 25 per cent to remain,” he added.

“The feeling in Scotland is that we are being dragged out of Europe against our will - a feeling only compounded by Mrs May's determination to pursue a hard Brexit,” the MEP went on.

“The Scottish Government has put forward an imaginative and flexible solution for Scotland. It deserves serious consideration in this House,” he explained. “If the UK is not flexible in these talks, the UK will not only be leaving the European Union. The UK will cease to exist.”