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Luxembourg warns against Scottish independence

Jean Asselborn claimed that it is a 'time for solidarity' between EU member states. Picture: AP

Jean Asselborn claimed that it is a 'time for solidarity' between EU member states. Picture: AP

  • by ANDY PHILIP
 

One of the smallest countries in Europe has warned against member states going their “separate ways”.

EU states should work in solidarity to face up to serious economic and social challenges, according to Luxembourg’s foreign minister, Jean Asselborn.

Scottish voters will be asked whether to back independence from the rest of the UK in autumn next year.

Prime Minister David Cameron has called for an in/out referendum on the UK’s place in the European Union if the Conservatives win the next general election.

Mr Asselborn said: “As we are all facing serious economic and social challenges, this is a time for solidarity between member states of the EU and within member states rather than for going separate ways.”

Luxembourg has a population of about half a million people and is bordered by Germany, France and Belgium.

A Scottish Government spokeswoman said ministers were committed to continued EU membership, assuming a Yes vote next year.

“Our hope and expectation is that before the UK government holds its planned in/out EU referendum in 2017, Scotland will be an independent nation with our own seat at the top table,” the spokeswoman said.

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie said: “Even this small, successful country has recognised the significant advantages to Scotland of remaining within our modern partnership of nations.

“Scottish Liberal Democrats believe we are best placed to tackle the social and economic challenges our countries face when we work together.

“No modern, successful country has broken up in recent history and there is good reason for that.”

 

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