A gift to Putin Sturgeon slammed for posing threat to NATO with independence chaos

Nicola Sturgeon blasted for endless quest for independence

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Professor Azeem Ibrahim, former foreign policy adviser to the Biden campaign, said that Scottish independence poses “a threat” to the NATO alliance, arguing that this is something Putin would like “nothing more than to see”. The main reason Scottish independence would be so damaging, Prof Ibrahim said, is because of the SNP’s policy of scrapping the nuclear deterrents – something which he said would cause “complete chaos” on the global stage.

Speaking to Express.co.uk, the foreign policy expert said: “I used to work as a foreign policy adviser to the Biden campaign, and one of the things I tried to articulate to them was the threat that Scottish independence actually poses to the NATO alliance.

“The breakup of the UK would be a gift to Putin.

“He would like nothing more than to see the major NATO power in Europe break up.

“This would put our nuclear deterrent in disarray, as it is an avowed SNP policy to remove the nuclear deterrent from Scottish shores.”

He added: “I briefed the Biden administration on this to try to make it clear that we have to be aware of these threats that are emerging and I believe since the Ukraine crisis has erupted, these threats are actually much more pronounced now and much more obvious than they were in past.

“Remember that the UK is one of the primary ways of providing the nuclear umbrella to Europe in the NATO alliance.

“So, all of that would be in complete chaos.

“It would be Brexit times 100.”

Last year, a defence expert claimed that Trident may be forced overseas or halted if Scotland gains independence.

This is because key Trident assets – such as the Farslane submarine base, the warhead loading site at Coulport, and nearby testing ranges – are all located in Scotland or Scottish waters.

John Gower, a rear admiral at the time of the 2014 independence referendum, concluded in a European Leadership Network paper: “A Scottish secession would therefore generate fundamental operational and fiscal issues for the UK’s nuclear deterrent.”

Less than a week after Putin began his invasion of Ukraine, he put Russia’s nuclear force on high alert, which the US described as a “totally unacceptable” escalation.

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The move came in response to what Putin called “aggressive statements against our country”.

But despite the escalation of the war in Ukraine, the SNP remains committed to removing the UK’s nuclear deterrent, Trident.

The party’s Westminster Leader, Ian Blackford, reiterated this commitment earlier in March, dismissing the idea that nuclear weapons serve as a successful deterrent from nuclear war.

Confirming that the party’s position had “absolutely not” changed as a result of the war in Ukraine, he told Press Association: “There is a threat to the world from nuclear weapons.

“The idea that having nuclear weapons provides a deterrence that removes that threat is far-fetched, to say the least.

“The SNP Scottish government is very clear that an independent Scotland, amongst other things, would seek to be a member of NATO.

“We would be alongside our friends or partners in the Western world, and we would want to make sure that we’re taking our responsibilities for defence and security just as any other independent country does.”

But when questioned on whether he thought an independent Scotland would be eligible to join NATO, he said: “I think NATO made it clear that it seeks to work with those that apply for members.”

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