The Scotsman cartoon: Scottish independence and EU

Illustration: Iain Green
Illustration: Iain Green
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It would be “extremely difficult, if not impossible” for an independent Scotland to get the necessary approval to join the European Union (EU), the president of the European Commission said yesterday.

Jose Manuel Barroso said an independent Scotland would have to apply for EU membership and get the approval of all current member states, in the wake of a Yes vote in September’s referendum.

The Scottish Government has previously said it will negotiate Scotland’s EU membership in the 18 months after the referendum.

Scottish ministers want the negotiations to be hammered out from within the Union while Scotland remains part of the UK, according to the Government’s White Paper on independence.