Scottish leader launches new independence drive

Stirling (United Kingdom)—Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on Friday launched a major new survey on independence, saying the Brexit vote had changed the conditions that existed when Scotland voted against secession in 2014.
“Brexit raises afresh the issue of independence…. It would allow us to take control of our own destiny,” Sturgeon told lawmakers from her Scottish National Party, which favours breaking off from the rest of Britain.
Centre-left leader Sturgeon said the survey would be conducted through a website and by polling party members, aiming to reach two million people, or around half the electorate.
The results are due by St Andrew’s Day on November 30 — celebrating Scotland’s patron saint.
“I believe it is right that our party does now lead a new conversation on independence. It will be a new debate, it will not be a re-run of 2014,” she said.
Scots are deeply divided on the issue and a new poll by YouGov published on Friday found 54 percent were against independence and 46 percent in favour.
In Scotland’s independence referendum two years ago, 55 per cent voted against and 45 percent in favour.
But Sturgeon said she believed support for separation would increase once the effects of Brexit become clear and argued that the weakness of the main opposition Labour Party meant the centre-right Conservatives could be in power for decades to come.

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