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Friday, March 23, 2018

Britain fell apart at the seams

The Scottish government has published a draft law on the referendum on independence. Two years ago the Scots chose unity, but now Britain leaves the EU and Scotland wants to stay. Next in the queue Northern Ireland, where differences are generally fraught with war. But Britain still has a chance to survive – thanks, ironically, Spain.

Obselecense a referendum on withdrawal from the European Union has split the United Kingdom. England (primarily industrial areas, small towns and other habitats of the white working class) in the vast majority voted in favor of leaving the EU. The people of Scotland and Northern Ireland voted to stay.

“The Northern Ireland economy survives largely through subsidies, a substantial portion of which provided just the EU”

The reasons for this love of continental Europe they have the opposite. The depressed economy of Northern Ireland survives largely on grants and subsidies, and a substantial part of the liquidity injections provided just the EU. Rich in Scotland, by contrast, managed to establish many mutually beneficial economic ties with the continent. The Scots sell to the oil and whiskey, take tourists out, offer educational services. Cooperation with Brussels is beneficial to the region. Even a temporary introduction of the visa regime with the EU (and this is an inevitable consequence of the “hard Brekzita”, the rate at which proclaimed Prime Minister of Her Majesty, Theresa may) will kill a lot of enterprises will complicate the life of businessmen, reduce the number of jobs. Another consequence of the “hard Brekzita” will be the withdrawal of Britain from the common market of the European Union. Exports from Scotland, therefore, inevitably faced with the European customs duties.

All these issues were actively discussed at the conference of the Scottish national party (SNP), which took place in Glasgow last week. The leader of the nationals and the first Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon has announced then that it intends to organize another referendum on independence from Britain. The party members welcomed her statement with a standing ovation and unanimously voted for. And on Thursday the eight-page draft law on the referendum was posted on the website of the Scottish government.

The vote suggests the same issue as in 2014: “Should Scotland be an independent country?”. Some changes in the regulations suggest that the opportunity to vote on the referendum will now have a 16-year-old of Scots and EU citizens residing in Scotland. The SNP, for many years advocating for the independence of the region, thus hoping to get the voices of young people and students who don’t want to lose the opportunity to freely travel to Europe. As for EU citizens, working or studying in Scotland, their lack of boundaries is beneficial by definition.

Not to say that the Scottish polls support the idea of a second referendum. Sociological research suggests that supporters and opponents of such a step were divided in the same proportion as in 2014 45 and 55 percent. However, the SNP held a special poll, adding the citizens, as in their opinion would be influenced by “hard Brickset”. So the party managed to achieve the desired performance: 43 percent of respondents confirmed that a second referendum is needed, but 42 percent believe the opposite.

Sharply against a second plebiscite called liberals and conservatives of Scotland, the benefit of actually are a division of obselecense parties. “Irresponsible economic vandalism” called the idea of the SNP local leader of the labour party (left liberals) Kezia Dugdale. “To fight against the referendum at every step” and vowed conservative leader Ruth Davidson. However, the SNP, with its overwhelming majority in the Scottish Parliament could easily ignore the criticism of the opposition. While Nicola Sturgeon is very popular in Scotland-the separatists and the Scottish unionists, which also plays into the hands of supporters of the second referendum.

The prices range plans of Edinburgh apprehended with undisguised irritation. Representative Theresa may explained that “the Prime Minister and the government believe that legitimate opportunities to hold a new referendum on independence does not exist. “The referendum took place two years ago. Turnout was high, and a large majority voted that Scotland remained part of the United Kingdom” – recalled to Downing street.

Anticipating these objections, representatives of the SNP stressed that the referendum in 2014 was held when Britain was “very different country”. After her break with the EU, all you need to replay. Their trump card in this debate is the huge number of Scots who voted to stay in the European Union – 62%, with very high turnout.

Opponents of independence logic. The trade of Scotland and Britain more than twice the turnover of Scotland and the EU. To remain in the European common market, but to lose the market in Britain for the Scots is not profitable, not to mention the freedom of movement and employment. Low oil prices also did not add the Scots of self-confidence, especially as the budget deficit just reached a record 14.8 billion euros.

Knowing all of this, Sturgeon is not going to assign an exact date for a new plebiscite. Soon she will use him as a threat in the long and difficult negotiations with London. It will achieve from Theresa may, the maximum mitigation “hard Brekzita” for Scotland. In that case, if customs and visa concessions can not be achieved, the Scots will inevitably start the process of preparing for a new referendum, not particularly interested in what people think in London about its legality or illegality.

In parallel, the Scottish nationalists are behind the scenes talks with fellow parliamentarians from Madrid. Frightened by the prospect of secession of Catalonia, Spain promised to block the return of Scotland in the EU in the event of its separation from Britain. Representatives of the SNP to convince the Spanish colleagues that their independence will be quite different than the rebellious Catalans. “We’re a nation emerging from a country that leaves the EU, explained to Politico magazine, a representative of the SNP. – This is not to be a precedent for Spain and Catalonia, as Spain has no plans to withdraw from the EU”.

With all this Scottish referendum will not be the last threat to the territorial integrity of the UK. The territory of high risk Northern Ireland, in the case where you still don’t understand how will respond Brickset. Except, of course, that Belfast would inevitably lose billions of dollars in subsidies allocated by the European Union regularly. Traditionally poor and a survivor of the last 20 years, significant de-industrialization, the region will become even poorer.

It is also unclear what will happen to the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic. Until now it was open, the citizens of Ireland and Britain freely moved from country to country, traded, worked and studied where he wanted. Now she has become the EU border with these border guards, customs duties, visa control. The nationalist party “Sinn FEIN”, advocating for the unification of the two Irelands, has offered to hold a referendum on the question of the border. It has the potential to provide the United Kingdom even more serious problems than a new Scottish referendum.


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