SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon wants to host a major summit for every EU nation

Photo: Jane Barlow-WPA Pool/Getty Images.

Scotland’s first minister and SNP leader Nicola Sturgeon says that she will hold a summit for leaders from the European Union’s 27 other members to discuss Scotland’s ongoing relationship with Brussels and the wider EU.

“One group we want to reassure is EU citizens living here in Scotland. Those who have done us the honour of making Scotland their home will be protected. I will be inviting all members of the 27 EU members states to Bute House here,” she said at a news conference on Saturday morning.

Speaking outside Bute House, the official residence of the Scottish first minister, Nicola Sturgeon also once again reiterated her desire for Scotland to hold another referendum on being part of the United Kingdom, following the UK’s decision to leave the European Union following Thursday’s referendum.

Sturgeon said that the option of another referendum on independence is “very much on the table” and that her government is taking steps to make sure the right legislation is in place to allow such a referendum to occur.

Here is the key extract from Sturgeon’s speech a little earlier:

“The cabinet expressed its pride at the overwhelming vote to stay in the EU. We are determined to act decisively and to build unity. A second independence referendum is an option that is very much on the table and to ensure that option is a deliverable one and steps will be taken now to ensure the necessary legislation is in place. Cabinet this morning formally agreed that work.”

“The Scottish Government will be working hard to protect Scotland’s interests but we will not be taking or eye off the ball. While Westminster is in turmoil we have stable government and we will continue our work.”

Scotland voted 62% to 38% to remain in the EU in a referendum on Thursday, sharply contrasting with Britain’s overall 52%-48% vote to leave. That result could be justification for another independence vote, the Scottish government argues.

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