Hundreds march in Scotland to demand return to EU
Edinburgh, Scotland, Jan 31 (EFE).- Hundreds of people carrying torches and Scottish flags took part here Tuesday in a procession to demand the return of Scotland to the European Union on the third anniversary of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the bloc.
Amid light rain and winds occasionally gusting to 64 km/h (40 mph), the protesters made their way through Edinburgh’s Holyrood Park to the Scottish Parliament.
“I used to be European, my children were born European. My children lost their right to roam in Europe in 2016, I lost the right to roam throughout Europe in 2016,” scientist Rodger Brendan told EFE when asked why he was protesting.
While the UK’s non-binding June 23, 2016, referendum on Brexit resulted in a vote of 52 percent to 48 percent in favor of pulling out of the EU, 62 percent of voters in Scotland rejected cutting the link with Europe.
The split became official on Jan. 31, 2020, after years of arduous negotiations between Brussels and London.
A poll conducted ahead of Tuesday’s anniversary showed the proportion of Scottish residents opposed to Brexit has climbed to 67 percent.
Lorna Slater, co-leader of the Scottish Green Party and a minister in the pro-independence regional administration in Edinburgh, called the 2016 referendum “a dark day for democracy” that “showed how little the views of the people of Scotland matter” to the UK government.
“The reality is that Brexit was always based on a series of mistruths and lies,” she told the marchers. “The longer Brexit endures, the harder it will be to reverse, this is why our independence is so essential.”
The Scottish National Party (SNP) spokesperson for Europe, Alyn Smith, denounced Brexit as a failure.
“Three years after we left the European Union against our democratic will in Scotland we’re so much poorer, so much worse off. The UK is diminished, Scotland is diminished, the EU is diminished. “It’s the only negotiation in human history where everybody came off worse.”
The SNP-Green coalition government in Edinburgh argues that independence from the UK is the only path for Scotland to rejoin the EU. EFE ggs/dr