Nicola Sturgeon: New leader of Scottish National Party vows fight for independence is 'unwon'

She also ruled out any future deals with either a Conservative or Labour government – unless Trident was removed from Faslane

Rose Troup Buchanan
Saturday 15 November 2014 17:33
Nicola Sturgeon gives her first speech as leader of the SNP
Nicola Sturgeon gives her first speech as leader of the SNP

In her first speech as leader of the Scottish National Party Nicola Sturgeon has vowed that “Scotland will become an independent country”.

Speaking at Perth Concert Hall Ms Sturgeon ruled out any suggestion of a future deal with a Conservative government, as well as any notion of working with a future Labour parliament – unless it agreed to remove the nuclear Trident base from Faslane.

Passing over a wide range of topics, Ms Sturgeon – who first joined the SNP aged 16 – appeared to be rapturously received by the audience, with one attendee tweeting: “I have not seen a party leaders speech so well received for a decade.”

Ms Sturgeon, who was elected to lead the SNP following Alex Salmond’s resignation after the loss of the referendum, spoke at length about the vote, claiming the party’s battle for independence remained “unwon”.

"But friends, know this," she told the hall, "It will be won. Scotland will become an independent country."

Not all there were pleased by her insistence on discussing the referendum. Andrew Scott Crines tweeted: “Nothing new in Nicola Sturgeon's, just re-fighting lost battles. 55% said No. Can't change history by wishing it away. Move on”.

Nicola Sturgeon and former boss Alex Salmond campaigning together

Kenny Stevenson agreed: “Referendum done and dusted but #Sturgeon won't shut up about it. Try saying something about actual policy.”

Ms Sturgeon also spoke on poverty, labelling it a “scandal” and declaring it would be her “personal mission” to tackle the issue.

A Herald Scotland report earlier this year estimated that roughly one million Scots lived below the poverty line.

The new SNP’s leader’s key policies were announced as land reform, raising attainment in schools and gender inequality which she will set out in more detail over the next two weeks.

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