SNP announces Westminster front bench team

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Stephen Gethins has replaced his ex-boss Alex Salmond as the SNP’s international affairs spokesman at Westminster after the former First Minister lost his seat at the general election.

The MP for North East Fife joins the party’s front bench in the wake of the poll on June 8 which saw the Nationalists lose 21 seats.

Stephen Gethins, MP for North East Fife, is the SNP's new Westminster spokesman for international affairs and Europe. Picture: George Mcluskie

Stephen Gethins, MP for North East Fife, is the SNP's new Westminster spokesman for international affairs and Europe. Picture: George Mcluskie

Gethins, a former special advisor for Salmond, will also become the SNP’s spokesman on Europe at a time when Brexit is expected to dominate the Commons agenda.

There was also a promotion for Kirsty Blackman, MP for Aberdeen North, who replaces Stewart Hosie to become the party’s spokeswoman on the economy.

Ian Blackford, who was last week elected the SNP group leader at Westminster, said the new front bench team drew on “the huge wealth of talent and experience across the party”.

“As Scotland’s leading party at Westminster, and the third party across the UK, the SNP has a huge opportunity, and pivotal position, in this hung parliament to stand up for Scotland’s interests and make our voice heard,” he said in a statement today.

“The SNP will be the strong and effective opposition to this weak Tory government – using our influence to further Scotland’s interests and deliver fairer, progressive policies, to make our country the best it can be.”

Joanna Cherry remains spokeswoman for justice and home affairs, while Hannah Bardell becomes spokeswoman for trade and investment.

Philippa Whitford retains her job as health spokeswoman.

Gethins said he was “delighted” with his new role in a post on social media, adding it was a “privilege to build on the work of Alex Salmond”.

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