Attack on Royals
Salmond tells Prince William: ‘stay out of indy debate’
No mention of Prince’s meeting with Ms Sturgeon
Alex Salmond has launched an attack on the Royal Family, demanding it stays out of the constitutional debate.
The former First Minister has warned that “desperate unionists” are seeking to drag the monarchy into discussions over Scotland’s future.
In a message to his Alba party supporters he said that it was also essential to “strike while the iron is hot” in progressing the case for independence while the “pro union” side of the debate is in “disarray”.
His comments were in response to the events of last week following the meeting of Prince William and former Labour Prime Minister Gordon Brown who is tipped to relaunch the campaign for the union.
Mr Salmond has warned that the monarchy must stay out of the debate on Scottish independence and said that it would be a “fatal error” for it to allow the perception that they were taking sides in the constitutional debate.
Alex Salmond: party is growing
Mr Salmond did not mention that Prince William also met SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon during his visit to Edinburgh where he addressed the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland. He also met also met Alistair Carmichael, Liberal Democrat MP for Orkney and Shetland, when he and the Duchess of Cambridge opened Orkney’s hospital.
Alex Salmond: A spokesman for Kensington Palace said: “During his time in Scotland Prince William has spoken to a broad range of people from different communities including politicians from across the political spectrum.”
Speaking to Alba’s supporters Mr Salmond said: “Whatever Prince William thought he was doing by agreeing to a confab with Gordon Brown just as he set up his latest campaign for the union….we should have no hesitation in seeing from that meeting, unionist preparation for attempting to persuade a constitutional monarchy to intervene in a constitutional debate which should be left to the people.
“It would be very wise for the Royal Family to follow what has been the Queen’s example over her long reign, to keep the monarchy over and above politics, and it would be foolish to have a situation in which it can be said that the monarchy is involved in the Scottish Constitutional debate.
“Back in 2014 David Cameron made a last ditch desperate and failed attempt to drag the Queen into politics. The Brown meeting shows poor judgement on both sides but the same degree of unscrupulous unionist desperation. The independence team should take note.
Mr Salmond’s warning comes as Alba claimed it membership continues to rise after the Scottish Parliament election.
At the weekend, he launched Alba International, a global membership section of the party, and he believes the party’s membership will continue to grow as the party presses for greater urgency in progressing the independence case.
He added: “It is quite clear that the forces of the union, David Cameron previously, and now Gordon Brown, have no compunction in getting themselves ready and set for what is coming in the next referendum campaign.
“However, the Scottish Parliament elections have left them in a state of disarray. That is why the case for Scottish independence must be progressed now as a matter of urgency.
“It would be infinitely better for the independence side to seize the moment and strike when the iron is hot to progress the constitutional issue.”
Mr Salmond also updated ALBA supporters that the party’s conference may be brought forward to a date earlier in September due to rising delegate demand requiring a larger venue for the event.