Nicola Sturgeon refuses to rule out 'hard border' with England in event of Scottish independence

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Nicola Sturgeon has pledged to be "frank and honest" with Scots about independence as she refused to rule out the prospect of a "hard border" with England being introduced.

The First Minister insisted she does not wish to see border checks if the country votes to become an independent and re-join the EU.

The First Minister insisted she does not wish to see border checks if the country votes to become an independent and re-join the EU.

The First Minister insisted she does not wish to see border checks if the country votes to become an independent and re-join the EU.

She was grilled about the prospect durnng an appearance on the BBC's Andrew Marr show today.

"I will be honest with the people of Scotland but that opens a situation where Scotland’s best interests depend on being independent and in charge of our own future," she said.

"And I don’t want borders its not my policies that are putting borders anywhere."

If the UK leaves the EU and pursues a different course on tax and customs from Scotland, which rejoins the Brussels bloc, then most experts say a border would be inevitable.

The First Minister refused to rule out the possibility.

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"We need to see how things play out over… and what the final relationship between the UK and the EU will be," Ms Sturgeon added.

"I will always be frank and honest with people in Scotland about the choices I am asking them to make."

Tory interim leader Jackson Carlaw seized on Ms Sturgeon's comments.

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“Nicola Sturgeon’s acceptance that Scottish independence will most likely lead to a border with England is a dramatic shift," he said.

“Up until now the nationalists have refused to accept this as even a possibility but they are can see they are fooling no one.

“Sturgeon must now continue to be ‘honest’ and admit that separation from the UK would lead to extreme austerity, hard borders with England and damage to public services.”