Boris Johnson: This is not the time to have another referendum
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Boris Johnson savaged Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP for “waving the white flag” while Russia’s brutal war against Ukraine rages on. The British Prime Minister told the audience at the Tory spring conference that the SNP was “responding to Putin’s sabre-rattling by getting rid of this country’s nuclear deterrent”. Despite the war in Ukraine, the SNP remain opposed to nuclear weapons and are committed to removing them from the country as part of the party’s platform.
Mr Johnson accused the SNP of “waving the white flag” in front of President Vladimir Putin.
He said: “How incredible that even now it should be possible for the SNP to respond to Putin’s sabre-rattling by getting rid of this country’s nuclear deterrent along with 11,000 jobs in Scotland.”
Citing a high-tech computer lab that he recently visited outside Edinburgh, Mr Johnson joked: “Based on quantum physics, it can hold two positions at once, a bit like the SNP on NATO.”
NATO membership has long been at a centre of a split inside the SNP.
In 2012, the SNP narrowly voted in favour of joining NATO should the country gain independence.
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The SNP’s governing coalition partner the Scottish Greens recently doubled down on its anti-NATO position, saying an independent Scotland would be better off staying out of the military alliance.
Mr Johnson also bashed Sir Keir Starmer’s Labour Party, saying: “How incredible that Labour should be so spiritually cowed that they have become the enablers and lapdogs of the SNP.
“At any UK general election, it would be those two terrible twins – Labour and the Scottish Nationalists – each vying to be more left-wing than the other.”
Mr Johnson also attacked the SNP’s plan for another independence referendum, as he insisted that “now was not the time”.
He said: “This is not the time for more delectable disputations on the constitution when our European continent is being ravaged by the most vicious war since 1945.
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“And when public services and the economy need to recover from the pandemic.”
Mr Johnson also attacked the SNP and Labour for wanting to shut down all UK oil and gas production.
He claimed that cutting off domestic production would only expose the UK to blackmail by President Putin.
The Prime Minister went on to heap praise on Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross, despite Mr Ross calling for his resignation prior to the Ukraine war.
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He said that Mr Ross “is the only political leader in Scotland saying loud and clear what should be blindingly obvious to everyone – that this is not the moment to have another referendum.”.
This comes as a new poll revealed that more than half of Scots want independence talks to cease amid the ongoing war in Ukraine.
A poll, by Savanta ComRes, surveyed 1,008 Scots aged over 16 between March 10 and 16.
The results found that 59 percent of Scottish adults would like talks on the timing of Ms Sturgeon’s Indyref2 postponed, while only 29 percent believe discussions should continue.
The findings follow just a week after SNP Westminster leader, Ian Blackford, hinted at a possible delay to the independence plans.
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