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Alex Orr (Letters, January 3) helpfully highlights the point that a country like Belgium can be represented in the European Union by its regions.

He concludes that the only way for Scotland to be represented in the EU is through independence. However, before reaching that stage can we not implement similar arrangements to those which he has highlighted? Rather than argue for independence at every turn, it would be better to look at other countries, such as Belgium with Flanders and Wallonia and see how they operate within the EU.

Sandy Gemmill

Warriston Gardens

Edinburgh

Another day, another missive from Alex Orr on his beloved European Union (Letters, 3 December).

Latvia and Luxembourg, however small, are independent countries within the EU. Therefore, they have the right to the rotating presidency, and any other committee that comes along. Scotland is part of the United Kingdom. Has Mr Orr developed selective amnesia? Well, I can remind him: there was a referendum in Scotland a few months back. The majority decided they wanted to stay in the UK. Most of us get on with life, and do not feel sidelined or downtrodden as a 
nation. In fact, the majority of us in Scotland are quite happy with our lot. It’s only the likes of Mr Orr and the SNP that think otherwise.

Roger Peart

Arbirlot, Angus

Alex Orr (Letters, 3 January) 
continues to cite the practices and policies of other countries as models for the future conduct of Scottish affairs.

Over the years, he has quoted just about every country in the world, from Ireland to Saudi Arabia. Former first minister Alex Salmond would incessantly quote the statements and ideas of others as his justification for Scottish independence.

Is original thinking entirely absent from SNP policies?

Malcolm Parkin

Gamekeepers Road

Kinnesswood, Kinross