Running its course

With regard to the question of an independent Scotland’s accession to the European Union, I’m grateful to Colin Hamilton for confirming that he is not an expert on EU statutes (Letters, 13 May).

This is something we supporters of independence wondered about. However, his grasping at the nuances of statements made by Professor Neal Walker and Graham Avery to support his position regarding accession has the air of a man clutching at straws as both these academics have made it abundantly clear that, while detailed negotiation lies ahead, it is their view that it would be absurd for the EU to expel Scotland and have it and its EU citizens go through an extended accession process.

However, in fairness to Mr Hamilton, he appears to have abandoned his earlier hard-line stance and is nudging towards the majority view that an independent Scotland would, ultimately, join the EU.

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It would appear that the particular scare about Scotland being unable to join the EU has almost run its course.

Douglas Turner

Derby Street


IT WAS disappointing to turn from the admirably polite but nonetheless comprehensively destructive reply to Ken Walton’s feeble argument that Scottish classical music would suffer on independence (Iain McLarty, Letters, 12 May) to yet another letter from Colin Hamilton on Europe (13 May).

Mr Hamilton admits he is not an expert. I have a positive suggestion: let him imagine that he is a Brussels official tasked with giving advice to his political masters on how to respond to a Yes vote in Scotland.  

Bearing in mind the expansionist outlook that has characterised the European Union attitude for many years, what conceivable arguments could he adduce for taking a negative attitude to Scotland when the most open of arms have been extended to eastern European states with distinctly shaky credentials for membership?

It’s no use pretending such matters are all about rules and regulations. At the end of the day, political considerations will dictate – and rightly so.

Alan Oliver

Battock Road

Brightons, Falkirk