MSP launches bid to move Mary's body to Scotland

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Moves to have the body of Mary, Queen of Scots returned to Scotland will be initiated by a Nationalist MSP this week.

South of Scotland MSP Christine Grahame is to table a motion in the Scottish Parliament calling for the Catholic monarch's remains to be returned from Westminster Abbey, where she is interred, to Falkland Palace, in Fife.

"She was an iconic historical Scots figure and ultimately the victim of English plotting," Ms Grahame said.

Mary feld to England after being forced to abdicate in 1567. She was held prisoner by her cousin, Elizabeth I, found guilty of treason and executed 20 years later.

A spokesman for the Catholic church said: "Mary, Queen of Scots is held in very great esteem by Scots Catholics who admire her religious devotion and fidelity to the church. As such, there would be significant interest in any plan to repatriate her remains."

Westminster Abbey said the body was taken there at the "express instructions" of her son and it takes its responsibility very seriously.