EU complexities

our First Minister and Spain’s prime minister are both correct in their interpretations of European Union law. Spain cites a part of the EU treaty relating to a “region” of a country. The First Minister is correct to point out that Scotland is a country and not a “region” , therefore the part of the treaty cited by Spain does not apply to Scotland.

The Treaty of the Union 1707 is an international treaty, ie a treaty between two nation states. First, the Union of the Crowns 1603 will still be in place and it is this Union that gave rise to the establishment of the United Kingdom. Therefore, the title United Kingdom will have to be removed from the Union of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Second, the 1707 treaty established the new nation state of Great Britain, with a Yes vote Great Britain ceases to exist.

Given that the United Kingdom between Scotland and England will still exist, it could be argued that two new nation states would exist upon a Yes vote. Scotland and the union of England, Wales and Northern Ireland. This is not the simple issue the unionists’ make it out to be.

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Jim Dear

Marketgate Arbroath

I SEE that the Rev Archie Black is once again agitating for England, Wales and Northern Ireland (rUK) to be evicted from the European Union along with Scotland in the event of a Yes vote in the forthcoming referendum (Letters, 30 November). This is nastiness in its purest form. I do not know what would happen after a Yes vote, but I suspect that there would be a requirement for Scotland to go through some sort of application process.

I have reservations about the democratic credentials of the EU, but there is zero possibility of rUK being evicted as a result of a referendum from which it is forbidden to vote. Would Spain be evicted in the event of Catalan independence? I think not.

Why does the Rev Black want that to happen? What possible advantage would accrue to Scotland if it does? Is this SNP policy? Politics is a dirty business and governments think nothing of disadvantaging other nations to their own gain, but to wish for misfortune to befall one’s neighbours for no good purpose is spiteful and vindictive. The Rev Black should be ashamed.

Graham M McLeod



Approval by the House of Commons of a bill calling for a referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union in 2017 has exposed the utter hypocrisy at the heart of the campaign of those opposing Scottish independence (your report, 30 November). The prospect of a referendum on the UK’s EU membership means that Scotland could find itself dragged out of the EU against the wishes of people living here in the event of a No vote in next year’s independence referendum.

With the anti-independence campaign keen to manufacture uncertainty on Scotland’s future in Europe, the fact that this bill has cleared a key parliamentary hurdle and is backed by the Prime Minister shows the only threat to Scotland’s membership of the EU comes from Westminster.

While No campaign politicians are keen to try and whip up fears and doubts, the inescapable fact is that it is Westminster that is the real threat to Scotland’s place in the EU and the No campaign has a real problem on its hands to explain why people in Scotland should take the risk of remaining with the Westminster system. The only way for Scotland to secure its place in the European Union is with a Yes vote next year for an independent Scotland that will speak with its own voice in the EU.

Alex Orr

Leamington Terrace