First Minister Nicola Sturgeon’s attempts to keep Scotland within the EU received a significant boost after one of Germany’s senior politicians gave a ringing endorsement to Scottish membership.
Sigmar Gabriel, the German economy minister and vice-chancellor, told a news agency that the EU would certainly accept Scotland as a member in its own right if the country left the UK and wanted to remain in the EU.
Mr Gabriel's comments were welcomed by the SNP Government, which is doing all it can to keep Scotland in the EU, even if that means a second independence referendum.
Kenneth Gibson said:
“These comments highlight the goodwill there is towards Scotland in the EU.
"The SNP Government will focus on the negotiations that lie ahead, to protect Scotland’s relationship with the EU and our place in the single market.
"A second independence referendum cannot be ruled out."