Sturgeon defends decision to hold referendum in 2014

It would be “wrong” to rush into a referendum on independence, Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said.

The SNP depute leader defended the Scottish Government’s plans for the crucial vote, which would not see people going to the polls to decide the country’s future until autumn 2014.

Political opponents, however, want the ballot to take place sooner rather than later.

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But speaking ahead of the SNP spring conference in Glasgow this weekend, Ms Sturgeon argued that there must be an “informed debate” prior to the referendum taking place.

The Deputy First Minister told BBC Radio Scotland’s Good Morning Scotland: “This is the biggest decision Scotland will take in 300 years, it is absolutely right that we have a fully informed debate, that everything from the enabling legislation through to the debate that will precede the referendum takes place in an appropriate timescale.”

Ms Sturgeon went on: “This is a big decision, it’s one that Scotland will want to get right and it’s therefore wrong in my view to try to rush it.”