Nicola Sturgeon: I don't know when there will be a second independence referendum

Posted On: 
20th September 2017

Nicola Sturgeon has said she "doesn't know" when there will be a second referendum on Scottish independence.

Nicola Sturgeon calling for a second referendum to be held by spring 2019.
Credit: 
PA Images

In a surprise admission, the SNP leader said "people feel very uncertain about everything just now, partly because the past few years have been one big decision after another".

Scotland's first minister demanded in March that a fresh vote on independence should take place by spring, 2019.

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In a letter to Theresa May that month demanding the Scottish Parliament be given the power to hold another referendum, she said: "The question is not if, but how."

After her party lost 21 seats in the general election in June, Ms Sturgeon ditched that timetable - although she insisted she still believed it would happen before the next Holyrood elections in 2021.

But pressed on when it might take place in an interview with the New Statesman, she said: "The honest answer to that is: I don't know."

She added: "I'm saying, OK, people are not ready to decide we will do that, so we have to come back when things are clearer and decide whether we want to do it and in what timescale."

However, Ms Sturgeon did say that she supported calls for a new EU referendum once the terms of the Brexit deal are finalised.

"“The very fact we have no idea what the final outcome might look like suggests there is a case for a second referendum," she said.

She also used the interview to take a swipe at Theresa May's leadership style.

"This is a woman who sits in meetings where it’s just the two of you and reads from a script,” she said.

"I found it very frustrating because David Cameron, whose politics and mine are very far apart, always managed to have a personal rapport."