Nicola Sturgeon urges Europeans to stand up to rising xenophobia

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon who is to call on people across Europe to "stand up and be counted" in the face of rising xenophobia. Picture: PA

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon who is to call on people across Europe to "stand up and be counted" in the face of rising xenophobia. Picture: PA

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NICOLA Sturgeon is to call on people across Europe to “stand up and be counted” in the face of rising xenophobia.

Scotland’s First Minister will say inaction is not an option amid increasing support for far-right politicians across the continent.

She will tell the European Green Party conference in Glasgow that the current political climate “should be of huge concern to us wherever we live”.

She will say: “These are not simply cases of a candidate whom we don’t like winning an election. Their politics are totally hostile to the notion of equality for all. Rather than tackling the key challenges we all face - they only seek to exploit them.

“I know many of you feel real anxiety about what is happening in your own countries.

“I don’t pretend to have all of the answers - none of us do. But I know this. We must not sit back and let this happen. Doing nothing is not an option.

“Now is the time for all of us who believe in progressive values to get out and fight for them like never before.

“Now is the time to stand up and be counted.”

Ms Sturgeon will add: “Scotland may lie at the edge of Europe, but it has always been - and wants to remain - at its heart.

“As Europe grapples with the defining issues of our age - the largest refugee crisis since the end of the Second World War, the growth in inequality and the impact of climate change - now more than ever independent nations across Europe must work together. We want to work with them.”

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