Brexit: Theresa May says Article 50 will not be activated before 'UK approach' decided

Scotland voted to remain in the European Union

Jon Stone
Friday 15 July 2016 18:15 BST
PM: Scotland is very important

Britain will not trigger Article 50 to start the process of leaving the European Union until Scotland’s position in negotiations is clear, Theresa May has signaled.

Though the UK voted to leave the European Union by 52 per cent to 48 per cent, Scotland, along with Northern Ireland and London, overwhelmingly voted to stay.

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said she will seek to ensure Scotland remains in the EU; she has not ruled out a second independence referendum.

Theresa May's first speech as PM: Unity with Scotland and Ireland is important

The Prime Minister said after a meeting with Ms Sturgeon she would not formally start the process of leaving the bloc until there was a coherent “UK approach” to negotiations.

“Scotland’s very important to me. When I stood on the steps of Downing Street on Wednesday I made clear that I believe in the United Kingdom,” she said.

“I’ve just had an excellent meeting with the First Minister – a very positive and constructive meeting.

“I'm willing to listen to options and I've been very clear with the first minister today that I want the Scottish government to be fully engaged in our discussions.

“I have already said that I won't be triggering Article 50 until I think that we have a UK approach and objectives for negotiations – I think it is important that we establish that before we trigger Article 50.”

It has previously been suggested that Scotland could inherit the UK’s EU membership.

Support for independence and a second referendum on secession from the UK has also picked up in the wake of the referendum

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