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Supreme Court to hear indyref case in October

All Under One Banner Scottish independence
Independence campaigners will get a verdict on poll’s legality in October (pic: Terry Murden)

A legal case to establish whether the Scottish government can hold an independence referendum without consent from Westminster will be heard by the Supreme Court in October.

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon is using the courts to challenge Westminster’s continued refusal to grant a new poll through what is known as a Section 30 order.

She has insisted that any referendum will only be held within the law and a hearing has been set for 11 and 12 October.

It means the case will be heard almost exactly a year before her plan to hold the vote, which is scheduled for 19 October 2023.

Ms Sturgeon and her nationalist supporters claim that because pro-independence parties secured a majority in the Scottish parliament last year they have a mandate for another referendum on the issue.

Critics say that, unlike the first past the post voting system, the referendum will be based on a straight majority of voters across the country and currently this is more evenly spread.

Meanwhile, the two leadership candidates for the Conservative party have reaffirmed their opposition to a referendum.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss, who the bookies have as favourite to win the members’ poll, has been talking up her Scottish credentials, having been raised in Paisley.

She is keen to strengthen the case for the United Kingdom by making “people’s lives better”.

However, among Scottish parliamentarians, only Oliver Mundell, the Dumfriesshire MSP, has expressed support for her bid.

Among senior Tories she is not the most popular of candidates. Some have described the prospect of her entering No 10 as a “disaster” and the “hardest of sells” to the Scots.

Nationalists seized on her comments today that there had been no growth for the past 20 years.

SNP Shadow Chancellor Alison Thewliss said: “This is a stunning admission from a serving Tory Cabinet minister that Westminster control has caused decades of economic failure – and the UK is now heading for a recession on the watch of this Tory government.

“Liz Truss is unwittingly making the case for Scottish Independence.”

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