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SNP gains are ‘clear message’ for second independence referendum, says Sturgeon

The performance of the Scottish National Party (SNP) in Britain’s General Election has sent a "clear message" on a second independence referendum, said leader Nicola Sturgeon, after the party made wide gains across Scotland.

The SNP won 48 seats with 45% of the vote, thirteen seats more than it did in 2017. Amongst the key victories was the unseating of Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson in East Dunbartonshire.

Sturgeon said the results were a "clear endorsement Scotland should get to decide our future and not have it decided for us".

"The results across the rest of the UK are grim but underlines the importance of Scotland having a choice,” she added.

“I don’t pretend that every single person who voted SNP yesterday will necessarily support independence, but there has been a strong endorsement in this election of Scotland having a choice over our future; of not having to put up with a Conservative government we didn’t vote for and not having to accept life as a nation outside the EU.”

“I have just won an election on the strength of the argument that it’s Scotland’s right to choose,” she added. “It’s up to the Tories to decide what their plan B is when my plan A has just been given a ringing endorsement.”

Speaking on Brexit, the SNP leader also said "Scotland has sent a very clear message - we don't want a Boris Johnson government, we don't want to leave the EU”.

"Boris Johnson has a mandate to take England out of the EU but he must accept that I have a mandate to give Scotland a choice for an alternative future."

See more from The Guardian here and the BBC here.

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